With the new ExperienceQuarter, we aim to offer our guests not only a modern terminal to get on and off the SchafbergBahn, but also a unique visitor center with high-quality amenities and outstanding architecture. In this way, the long and valuable tradition of the SchafbergBahn will meld seamlessly with the modern world to create a true gem.
In the redesign of the valley station, we focused on those tourism parameters that have gained added relevance after the COVID-19 pandemic: sustainable experiences, the highest standards and optimized safety, along with guest services that are second to none.
Salzburg planning firm dunkelschwarz ZT GmbH is responsible for the building's architecture, emerging as the winner in a Europe-wide architectural competition that drew 54 submissions.
We see ourselves as an important driving force within the Salzkammergut – that said, regional value creation was also an important element of the construction process as a whole. For example, BSU Bauservice Unterberger GmbH from Abersee was contracted to provide excavation and construction services, and we worked closely with Promberger Elektrotechnik GmbH from Bad Ischl when it came down to the electrical work. Meanwhile, Salzburg-based firm dunkelschwarz ZT OG was responsible for architectural services.
The theme of sustainability is a common thread running throughout the entirety of the building project, and even during the planning phase, there was a major focus on sustainable building practices. The construction process largely avoided the use of plastics, instead prioritizing natural materials such as steel, wood, and mineral-based building supplies. Directly following the competition phase, the use of wood in construction, as yet another regional contribution to the ExperienceQuarter, was specifically sought and indeed provided. This allowed for the value chain to also feed into the actual construction materials and thus further embody regionalism.
Sustainability is likewise a focus with respect to energy: the south-facing roof is entirely covered with a photovoltaic system. It spans an area of approximately 850 square meters and has a power output of 156 kwp. Energy is generated through this photovoltaic system as well as through geothermal sources. Furthermore, the building shell is primarily composed of thermal insulation glass. This highly efficient glass facade is shaded by a canopy to prevent overheating in the summer and to optimize daylight utilization. At the same time, this allows for a lot of natural and indirect light to penetrate the hall, greatly reducing the need for artificial lighting during the day.
The transition also involves a complete shift away from oil. The valley station was converted from oil to a heat pump during renovation. In future, the heat pump will also be used for cooling the ExperienceQuarter. As a result, no fossil fuels will be used, making the ExperienceQuarter an exceptionally energy-efficient building.