Polestar produces electric performance cars and is co-owned by Volvo Cars and its Chinese parent company Geely. Polestar is also to be a guiding star for the alliance. With its small scale production and lack of company history, they can be quicker with innovations, more mobile in the market and bolder in design.
The questions regarding the design of the building therefore revolved around the relationship with the parent companies. On one hand it was important that the building had something that popped, something on its own, which could represent the new electric era. On the other hand, the building needed to fit in at the Volvo factory grounds without causing fragmentation. The building would also, despite its relatively modest scale, be a representative headquarter.
Polestar’s CEO Thomas Ingenlath was earlier the chief designer for Volvo Cars. He and the entire team at Polestar were very involved with the project and it became a collaboration of the kind you always wish for: where an engaged client drives the process forward, together with architects and others involved. We often say that we are no better than our clients, something that has been proven once again.
|Typology||Office & Showroom|
|Client||Polestar / Volvo Cars|
|Team||Bornstein Lyckefors Architects: Per Bornstein, Johan Olsson, Andreas Lyckefors, Petr Herman, Jens Ljunggren, Emelie Johansson|
|Location||Assar Gabrielssons väg, Göteborg, Sweden|
|Photography||Felix Gerlach, Åke Eson Lindman, Per Bornstein, Polestar|
The entrance building was previously an office for Volvo Bus and stood out at the site by greatly diverging from the ‘corporate architecture’ that the architectural firm Lund & Valentin in Gothenburg laid down for the Volvo Torslanda plant in the early 1970s.
The solution was to clad the existing concrete structure in printed glass and shape it into a white cube. Internal walls were also torn down, which allowed for daylight to flow in from all directions.
In the office building, which is linked to the entrance building, the office plan was rectified to simplify easy orientation and to give it a more coherent expression. Niches towards the atrium were clad in wood from floor to ceiling, and walls in the corridors were clad in whiteboard laminate to function as spontaneous meeting areas.
The interior color scheme is simple, with a gradient from white to gray. Small details are in orange, like Polestar’s own cars, where brake calipers, seat belts, etcetera are given the same accent color.