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location: Škofja Loka, Slovenia
area: 5.200 m2
client: LTH Castings d.o.o.
tip: production
status: completed
year of construction: 2014


LTH Castings is a foundry that manufactures products in aluminum and magnesium, mainly for major German car manufacturers. The high-tech production requires a high quality level of working environmentin order to achieve a high standard of product quality. Project represents the first phase of relocation from a location which does not have room for adequate expansion, and production itself is becoming too strong a burden for the surrounding area near the medieval town. The first stage of the relocation into the new industrial zone was the construction of tool shop facility of 5.200 m2, consisting of a development department in a traditional office building and a large-volume production hall with all the necessary infrastructure. Duality of the program is reflected in the duality of architectural composition. Development department is housed in a three-storey building with vertical concrete shades as its strongest element. Shades reduce the size of heat intrusion as well as disruptive aggressive morning and afternoon light using only their geometry, with no mechanical help. Tectonics and vertical dynamics of the development building is adjoined by a subdued composition of the production hall. Prefabricated reinforced concrete structure easily bears all load situations and is also a suitable frame for lightweight shell of thermal insulated metal sandwich made with insulation thickness of 15 cm to ensure adequate thermal stability of the working environment. As an adequate lighting is of the utmost importance for precise manual work process, we introduced sheds on the roof to ensure a high level of quality of northern light. This reduces the cost of energy for lighting, while allowing workers visual contact with the outside world. The entire interior of the production volume is painted in light gray RAL 9002, providing a sense of brightness and minimum contrast of light, being the least tiring for workers' eyes. Elements of natural night ventilation facility are arranged in the sheds. Grilles are mounted in the lower and upper zones, in the summer they open during the night. Natural draft cools the workspace by a few degrees, allowing the delayed start of cooling the building for a few hours. Energy supply of the building is arranged with groundwater, its energy potential is transformed into the summer cooling and winter heating via heat pumps. This reduces the carbon footprint of the building by 60%, the cost of energy supply is also reduced by the same amount. If the development of the company continues as projected, other segments of production will join the tool shop within a few years. Total industrial complex would then total 23.000 m2.


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