An Environmentally Friendly Facility
August 6, 2010 Innovations

An environmentally-friendly facility

The new Audemars Piguet production site has set new standards for environmentally-friendly construction. It’s the first Swiss industrial building that meets the “Minergie Eco” norms.

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Faced with the necessity of building a new production facility in Le Brassus, Audemars Piguet’s administration and board of directors accepted a challenge: to construct an environmentally-friendly building, following the same philosophy as the Audemars Piguet Foundation, created in 1992 and dedicated to the protection of forests and environmental education. “We wanted the new building to reflect the identity of the foundation, by respecting its site, the Vallée de Joux, and by providing the best working conditions possible to the company’s valuable employees,” recalls Daniel Saugy, general secretary of the foundation, who was responsible for monitoring the environmental aspects of the project.

To ensure that their future building would conform to these objectives, the company decided to adopt the Swiss “MINERGIE-ECO®” energy standards, which certify that a building is healthy and environmentally friendly. “When we started, the label was still in the test phase. The architectural firm we hired thus had to be quite creative to find solutions,” adds Saugy.

Meeting these standards meant satisfying a large number of criteria throughout the project. “Even before starting construction of the new building, we had to recycle the materials from the sawmill that had been on the site and do a complete remediation,” explains Saugy. The choice of materials for the new facility was also strict: they had to be sustainable, recyclable and non-toxic. Fibro-cement for the facades, water-based paint, eloxed aluminum window frames, and concrete made with sand from a gravel pit nearby -- to avoid pollution caused by transporting it from farther away -- were all used. Inaugurated in August 2009, the plant is the only industrial production facility in Switzerland that bears the “MINERGIE-ECO®” label.

More information on the “MINERGIE-ECO®” label: www.minergie.ch