The first stone laying was a “sphere of symbolism”, according to the distributor of fresh organic produce, well-known for its ethical, eco and strong corporate social responsibility approach to business.
And the new €22.5 million (£19.8 million) building will be a “forerunner of the new circular economy” and not just a business building, declared the Dutch firm as the foundation stones were laid in Waddinxveen, the Netherlands.
Measuring 19,500 square metres was designed by architect Thomas Rau and is expected to be completed mid-2018.
“The foundation stone is more than just an object; it stands for our core values: authentic, together, responsible,” said Eosta CEO, Volkert Engelsman.
“They are the basis of all our actions so it follows that we chose a circular approach and matching work environment. The building will feature a large atrium in the middle of all the offices, many meeting places, fireplaces, and spaces for meditation and naps.”
“The fireplaces are built into walls made from concrete and broken toilet bowls, while the company kitchen is furnished with second-hand to eighth-hand supplies.”
The HQ will also run on “light hours” provided by Philips Lighting which is where a firm pays for time rather than bulbs.
This leads to a modular and demountable installation where ideally nothing is discarded after use. Philips Lighting is developing the new circular approach, which encourages it to make the materials reusable and replaceable.
Since Philips will also pay the energy bill, there is a continuous incentive to innovate and make the lamps as energy efficient as possible, says Eosta.
Engelsman added how implementing the circular approach into the planning of the building has been very challenging for contractors and suppliers.
“Instead of buying beams for the new building, we wanted to buy “carrying capacity”; instead of cooling installations, we wanted to buy “temperature conditioning”. We’ve had to drop those ideas because suppliers were perplexed.
“As a company that tries to run ahead of the mainstream economy, we sometimes have to compromise. But the ideal is what we are continually focused on. That’s also what we wanted to convey in the foundation stone ceremony.”