The World Green Building Council (WGBC) presents its second branded series, produced by BBC StoryWorks: ‘The Spaces That Shape Us’. This series explores how architecture and design impact both our own wellbeing and that of the planet. Vestre’s factory, The Plus, the world’s most environmentally friendly furniture factory, is featured as one of the ten stories.
We spend 90% of our time indoors, yet we don’t always consider how spaces affect our health and well-being and the planet. As the global population grows and work patterns shift, reevaluating our living spaces is becoming increasingly important. Amid our efforts to accommodate diverse human needs, we face an even greater challenge: addressing the climate crisis and its threat to our shared home.
The Spaces That Shape Us is filmed across the world, from Colombia to Hong Kong, and takes its audience on a global odyssey, shifting perceptions of what buildings can be by unearthing how they shape our lives and the world around us. By rooting the series in the real spaces in which we live, learn and work, the incredible ideas and creativity of architects and designers are shared in an immersive and authentic way, told through the tangible experiences of real families, communities and experts who are redesigning the future.
The series taps into key themes relating to buildings, like social consciousness and the ways in which we work, while also exploring the wider question of how we can balance human progress without costing the Earth.
The Plus in Magnor, Norway, which opened in 2022, is designed to achieve BREEAM Outstanding certification. It is proof that green growth is possible; in other words, that the industry can be part of the solution, and that it is possible to create new jobs and economic growth while also protecting the climate and environment and managing the world’s natural resources sustainably.
Together, Vestre and the architects at Bjarke Ingels Group BIG, have created an entirely new typology, where people, production, technology, architecture, and nature are completely integrated with each other. The building’s energy consumption is 60 percent lower than that of similar conventional factories, while also emitting 55 percent less greenhouse gases than comparable factory structures. This means that The Plus is surpassing the goals of the Paris Agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent by 2030. In this factory, Vestre produce furniture to create social meeting places worldwide, and all their products are designed to last for decades.
“People today don’t only want to work being inspired by just an economic pursuit. They need to be inspired by something bigger as well. It’s more than just a factory. It’s basically our very own building of dreams,” says Bjørn Fjellstad, CEO of Vestre.
Published on November 8, 2023