Learning through play is the underlying concept of EXPLORiT at the Y-Parc Science and Technology Park, a multi-functional education center in Switzerland completed in 2020. The project from architectural firm Bureau d’architecture Philippe Gilliéron, Yverdon-les-Bains, features a 100-meter-long wing situated in a central location and covering an area of around 14,000 square meters.

Its six-story tower marks the highest point of the entire Y-Parc. The building has a shimmering gold anodized aluminum façade that can be seen from some distance. The project is divided into two main components, connected via a fully glazed atrium that serves as an access level. While one part houses the educational and recreational activities, the other accommodates the shops and offices.

EXPLORiT is the new heart of Y-Parc, Switzerland’s largest technology park in Yverdon-les-
Bains. © EXPLORiT

Sustainability was an important part of the building’s design and that included energy performance. Alongside a solar system on the roof, a standalone network for autonomous power supply and a system for heat recovery, the use of triple insulating glazing with the Silverstar EN2Plus thermal insulation layer from Glas Trösch helps ensure the building meets Minergie P energy efficiency standards. Progin SA Métal, Bulle, was responsible for façade construction.

“The planning of the fully glazed atrium posed a particular challenge,” says lead architect Mehdi Rouissi. “It was important to us to emphasize the transparent aesthetics of the atrium as a connecting element of both structures, and at the same time meet all of the requirements for heat and sun protection.”

The modern triple-insulating glass offers a number of performance benefits. In the summer, the low solar energy transmission of the Silverstar Sunstop Silver 20 T sun

protection layer prevents the atrium from overheating, while the Silverstar EN2plus thermal insulation layer ensures low heat losses in the winter. This approach ensures maximum transparency for the atrium, without the need for roller shutters. In addition, overall energy consumption and CO2 emissions are kept to a minimum thanks to the low heating and cooling requirements.