By combining noteworthy architecture and technological innovation, Schüco Italia’s new headquarters in Padua’s industrial district makes a clear company statement. The building houses top management, design, commercial, training, highly automated warehousing and showroom facilities. It is also a real-life demonstration of Schüco products at work. The design of B+B Associati of architects Marco Bonariol and Renato Bredariol is rigorously essential. The whole tone is one of quiet understatement. While each functional area is clearly identifiable, environments are designed to enhance the forward flow of the building. State-of-the-art technology ensures maximum occupant comfort. The tall pillars of the warehouse already on site were kept when converting the building into a high-tech logistics centre while a new parallel volume was built to house office and top-management functions. The result is a harmonious complex. A glazed overhead corridor connects these parallel volumes at first floor level. It is protected from the sun by an aluminium blade sunbreaker system. Sheltered between the two buildings, a quiet garden court sets a reflective mood. On one side, the enclosing wall is an expanse of smooth-finish fair face concrete ending at the assertive main entrance. The office block opposite is a statement of technological prowess: glazed walls framed by resin and wood fibre slabs; curtain walling on the south façade with latest generation photovoltaic cells; centralised electronic or manual operability of all interior environmental control systems. The atrium is the pivotal point for the circulation routes. On one side, an elegant staircase with metal handrails and glass balustrades leads to the offices and meeting rooms. On the other, a double-height exhibition area stretches out to a back wall made up of life-size examples of Schüco curtain walling and frames. Behind that, the building’s “machinery”, including geothermal plant and solar panels, is on full view. The exhibition space relates interestingly with the surrounding areas. It is divided into two, different-height volumes by an upper floor overhang on stilts containing the meeting rooms. Framed by dyed bonded resin/fibrewood panels, this glazed overhang creates an “urban scene” mirroring the exterior aspect of the building. Courtside, the polygonal line of the curtain wall contrasts with the curving line of its opposite number in fair face concrete with strip windows and staircase giving access to the canteen. The building proceeds with many such overlaps and throwbacks to create a general sense of flow. The materials too help produce a sense of continuity as wood, basalt and diorite slabs and glass reappear on flooring and partition walls. Glass is also used for the staircase balustrades, while the handrails and balustrades of all secondary stairs are in satin-finish steel. Other key features are a general attention to detail, a sense of directional flow, and the use of high-tech and domotics for optimal environment conditions throughout. At night the building supplies considerable luminosity to its surrounds.