Olympic House has officially opened in Lausanne, Switzerland, in a public park that is home to the 18th-century Château de Vidy, on the shore of Lake Geneva. Seeking the highest level of integration with the natural and historical setting, the Danish firm 3XN– in collaboration with the Swiss practice IttenBrechbühl – designed the International Olympic Committee’s new headquarters to bring the organization’s entire staff of 500, until now scattered in four offices in the city, under a single roof.
The design pursues five concepts, the core principles of the Olympic Games: movement, transparency, flexibility, sustainability, and collaboration.
The dynamic transparent facade, which follows a parametric design, evokes the movements of an athlete. Its double skin contains an inner layer with triple glazing. The building’s five floors are connected by the Unity Staircase, which references the five rings of the Olympic symbol and represents international cooperation. Surrounding a central atrium, the oak staircase and its periphery are the core of social activity, fostering a sense of community. The flexible spaces around it accommodate exhibition galleries, a cafeteria, and meeting rooms.
The hermetic building has earned LEED Platinum certification. Solar panels and a system for collecting and reusing rainwater have been installed, and during construction, over 90% of the material of the buildings that previously stood on the spot were reused as is or in recycled form.