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AGC glazing gives iconic Tunis landmark a sparkling makeover

A sparkling makeover for the iconic ETRATON building in Tunis. This office building was reinvented by ARK-architecture, who added a new glazed veil accentuating the landmark’s old distinctive features.

Thirty years after it was built, ETRATON has been reinvented, preserving some of its old distinctive features and breathing new life into its role as an urban landmark located on one of the Tunisian capital’s main thoroughfares . The ground floor is home to a double-height car showroom and showcases the sculptural aesthetics of the old staircase. The remaining floors are all dedicated to office space. The building’s noteworthy corner entrance is reminiscent of a stage curtain being lifted at the edge, as if promising a sneak peek at a remarkable spectacle formed by the play of light and the cityscape.

While appearing simple and monolithic at first glance, ETRATON’s skin is truly a glazed veil delivering excellent solar and thermal performance while conferring a singular dynamism on the structure as a whole. The glass panels were chosen following an exhaustive research process that focused on technical specifications, efficiency and aesthetics with a view to delivering a neutral, untinted and highly reflective result. Two types of prismatic structures punctuate the façade at different heights. This subtle variation in volumes, combined with the characteristics of the glass products used, generates a playful surface of dancing reflections and shadows, and highlights the building’s marvellous sensitivity to daylight and to the colour palette of the surrounding area.

The two AGC glazing products used in this project were Stopsol Supersilver Clear (for its highly reflective appearance) and Energy 65/41 (for its excellent solar and thermal performance).

ETRATON is very much a building of its time, one whose glazed skin demarcates two spectacles – one within, the other without – that are both profoundly symbolic of the life, rhythm and evolution of the city.

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