The Stavros Niarchos Foundation presented the hitherto construction development of the project, on the occasion of the completion of the Energy Canopy, the last important milestone of the construction phase, and one of the most innovative elements of the SNFCC. The SNFCC’s Energy Canopy is a marvel of construction and engineering, in as much a local as an international scale.
With an elaborate composition and special construction requirements, it is supported by 30 columns and is composed of 717 individual, precast pieces, towering over the building of the Greek National Opera. Despite the fact that it weighs a total of 4,700 tons with dimensions of 100 x 100 meters, and its highest point is at 46 meters, the Canopy creates the optical illusion of a very light structure, suspended above the SNFCC and joining the city skyline.
Apart from its technical and aesthetic characteristics, the Canopy also plays a particularly crucial role in the optimal operation of the SNFCC, and its environmental sustainability. The Energy Canopy has been constructed in such a way that it produces 2GWh of electrical energy per year, thus contributing to fulfilling the energy requirements of the Greek National Opera (GNO) and National Library of Greece (NGL) buildings, and to meeting the objective of minimizing CO2 emissions.
39 months after the beginning of the construction, the following parts of the project are nearing completion within the next few months: the Lighthouse -a multipurpose room on the roof of the GNO, the glazing for the facades, the floors, the suspended ceilings, paint and lighting features, the fixed furniture equipment including the bookstands, the mechanisms of the central and the alternative stage and the sitting areas for spectators.
Furthermore, the installation of the photovoltaic elements onto the canopy will begin in December and will be completed by early February 2016, as will the filling of the Canal with sea water. At the surrounding area, the upcoming steps include the completion of the auxiliary buildings, the pathways, the sports facilities and the planting of the rest of the Park. Construction of the SNFCC is expected to be completed in the first half of 2016. Source and photo by Stavros Niarchos Foundation.
The canopy roof provides essential shade and will be topped with 10.000 sq m of photovoltaic cells, enough to generate 1.5 megawatt of power for the library and opera house. This field of cells should allow the building to be self-sufficient in energy terms during normal opening hours. Wherever possible, natural ventilation will be used. The visual connection with the water will continue to the park, where it will focus on a channel to the side of the Esplanade, the main pedestrian axis of the site, in the north-south direction. The complex is aiming for a LEED platinum rating. Source by Renzo Piano Building Workshop.