Solid stairs for spontaneous meetings

NCC headquarters in Solna, Sweden by White arkitekter

The atrium in NCC’s new headquarters has been planned with an eye on creating a spontaneous meeting place where people are more likely to take the stairs than use the lift. It was therefore important that the staircase felt inviting, and the decision was made early on to clad it in wood, due to its tactile and warm properties and its capacity to move people. The solution was to create the whole structure in CLT, which actually proved to be the best option from a financial perspective too.

The staircase sides, known as strings, are made of CLT in FSC-certified Austrian spruce. The bridging sections on alternate levels, which are subject to higher loads, are supported by LVL beams in beech. The elements were prefabricated and lightly pigmented to reduce the yellowing of the wood, and were lowered into place through the roof, with a tolerance of 1 millimetre. The finely crafted handrails were installed on site. The steps and the insides of the strings are clad in dark-blue carpet, both for acoustic reasons and to make the stairs feel welcoming and safe.


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