Known for manufacturing durable outdoor seating for public spaces in New York, London, and Paris, the Norwegian furniture brand Vestre has announced plans to build the world’s most eco-friendly furniture factory. The new development, called “The Plus” for its cross-like shape and designed by Bjarke Ingels Group, aims to be an exemplar of sustainable architecture—its energy requirement will be 90 percent lower and will generate 50 percent less greenhouse gas emissions than a conventional factory of the same size. The Plus, which will become the Nordic region’s first industrial building to achieve BREEAM Outstanding certification, will accomplish this in part by sourcing materials such as local timber and low-carbon concrete, as well as using an energy supply system that combines 1,200 solar panels and geothermal wells.
Building the factory is a crucial next step in Vestre’s ongoing mission to become the world’s most sustainable furniture manufacturer. “Man-made climate change is the greatest challenge of our time,” says Jan Christian Vestre, the company’s CEO. “I sincerely believe that everyone can save the planet, at least a little bit. Sustainability is a result of the choices we make every day.” The factory will sit at the halfway point between the brand’s Oslo headquarters and its Snøhetta-designed manufacturing plant in Torsby, Sweden. All-electric Tesla trucks will shuttle between the three locations when the factory is fully up-and-running. Construction is slated to begin in August, though an estimated completion date has not yet been announced.