Leed _logo _image

Sustainability is one of the SNFCC’s fundamental values. The creation of an environmentally friendly and sustainable infrastructure for the buildings and the Park is an important goal in the design and construction of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center. Through environmentally innovative designs and practices, the project aims to earn at least Gold, and ideally a Platinum Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification, the first such designation in Greece and the first for a project of this scale in Europe. LEED is a building certification system developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) that provides independent verification that a building was designed and built using strategies aimed at improving energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality, and stewardship of resources and sensitivity to their impacts. There are four levels of certification; Platinum is the highest rating awarded, followed by Gold.

Uniquecharacteristics _image

A beacon of sustainability is borne out in every aspect of the design – from the Stavros Niarchos Park, which also functions as a green roof for the National Library and Greek National Opera, to the canal which provides anti-flooding protection for the site, to the photovoltaic canopy which produces energy for the needs of the two buildings and contributes to the goal of zero emissions.

The Stavros Niarchos Park, which covers 85% (percent) of the SNFCC site, will be one of the largest green spaces in Athens—welcome news and a vital breath of life to a city with the lowest per capita green space in Europe. The Park is landscaped with indigenous, drought resistance trees and plants, and its allées of shade trees will “sink” CO2 emissions.

The photovoltaic solar energy canopy, a 100m x 100m floating wing-like structure, which soars 14m above the Park’s summit and extends outward from its perimeter, will provide energy for the buildings. An innovative structure, both from engineering and a construction point of view, the canopy will be supported by 30 metal pillars and expresses the Foundation’s and Renzo Piano’s commitment to environmental designs and practices.

As visitors enter the Park, they can follow paths leading to a 32m-high summit. Beneath the earth is the building that houses the National Library of Greece and the Greek National Opera, making the hill the green roof for the structure. One of the largest in Europe, the green roof significantly reduces air conditioning requirements for the buildings and gives the project, together with the energy canopy, its defining elements of environmental innovation and commitment.