Landsbankinn Iceland
Where stone facades unite nature and urban life
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Sicherer Halt für die mit schweren Basaltsteinplatten verkleidete Fassade der Landesbank Island dank einer Komplettlösung aus fischer Hinterschnittankern und einer fischer/BWM Aluminium-Unterkonstruktion.

Landsbankinn: New headquarters for Iceland’s national bank

Founded in 2008, shortly after the global banking and financial crisis, Landsbankinn became one of Iceland’s largest financial institutes within just a few years. Until 2022, its approximately 1,000 members of staff have been working in 13 different buildings spread across Reykjavik. Those in charge at the bank wanted to change this situation.

Copyright header image: C.F. Møller Architects

“They wanted one central building that could house all of their operations”, Helgi Hallgrímsson from the Nordic architecture firm recalls. Together with CF Møller Architects from Denmark, Hallgrímsson’s architecture firm won a competition to design the building in 2018.
Vier ineinander verschränkte Gebäude in Form eines Fünfecks machen den neuen Hauptsitz der isländischen Landesbank Landsbankinn zu einem urbanen Zentrum der Stadt. Bild rechts: der verantwortliche Architekt Helgi Hallgrímsson.
Copyright image: C.F. Møller Architects

The architectural approach: modern, flexible, urban 

The four interlacing buildings being built near Reykjavik’s famous Harpa Concert and Opera Hall reflect the raw nature of Iceland. The shape of the buildings is inspired by Iceland’s topography and forms a pentagon in its layout. Both the horizontal, layered basalt stone panels on the facade and the generous water areas capture Iceland’s wild nature with its jagged landscapes, cliffs and lakes.

The building’s inner structure corresponds to the client’s vision of a lively and open atmosphere. “Our aim was to create a building that offers a modern, flexible and open workspace while contributing to a lively city and inviting people to come in”, the architect Helgi Hallgrímsson emphasises.
Blick ins Erdgeschoss der neuen Landesbank von Island: Die Form des Fünfecks (Pentagon) zieht sich vom Grundriss der vier Gebäude bis zu den überdachten Innen- und Lichthöfen durch.
Copyright image: C.F. Møller Architects

Project profile: 

C.F. Møeller Architects, Büro Kopenhagen & Nordic – Office of Architecture, Büro Reykjavik
Building construction:
Four concrete buildings with external insulation and a rear-ventilated facade structure fischer/BWM aluminium substructure
Building contractor:
SSJ Steinsmioja & S. Helgason
Planned construction period:
2019 until autumn 2022
Cladding material:
Solid basalt stone panels
Facade area:
22,000 square metres
Building type:
What was fastened with fischer products:
Rear-ventilated rainscreen facade clad with heavy basalt stone panels. Loads: Approx. 400 kg per square metre of facade
Architecture is making the framework around our lives. It’s about creating the space that we inhabit, whether it’s where we live, where we work, or where we play.
Helgi Hallgrímsson

Basalt stone rear-ventilated rainscreen facade – a case for fischer

Designing a building on paper is one thing, executing the design on-site is another. Höskuldur Arnarson, CEO of the Málmtækni HF construction firm in Reykjavik who is responsible for building the facade knows a thing or two about this. “The Landsbankinn project had many difficulties that required engineering innovation as well as a new way of thinking about a problem”, Arnarson recalls.
Trust plays an important role: Construction supervisor Höskuldur Arnarson (l.) and Stefan Schrag, Project Manager at fischer/BWM (r.).
Because his company had already established good connections with the fixing specialist fischer over the years, choosing fischer as a partner was easy. “Our Key Account Manager not only receives quick and competent replies to technical queries - fischer also had the perfect product for concealed fastenings of the basalt stone facade panels with the Zykon panel anchor FZP II”, Höskuldur Arnarson adds. “We were certain we would get the support that we need from fischer and that the customer will get the final product that they are looking for”.

Challenges for fischer: immense wind loads and heavy weights

Stefan Schrag, Project Manager at fischer/BWM, recalls: “We knew that the basalt stone panels weighed around 400 kg per square metres and that the wind loads in Iceland are around four times higher than in Germany. The client also used a very strong, reinforced concrete with a high density”. The challenge for Stefan Schrag and his Icelandic partner Höskuldur Arnarson therefore involved permanently and securely anchoring the rear-ventilated rainscreen facade made of basalt stone panels under these conditions.
Der natürliche isländische Basaltstein hat ursprünglich die Form eines Fünfecks. Um so viel wie möglich von dem Stein verwenden zu können, wird er in drei Teile geschnitten.
Iceland’s natural basalt stone was chosen for this project. “The stone has a pentagon shape, and is originally cut into three pieces, so we are trying to utilise as much of the stone as possible”, Arnarson explains. Up to 25 fischer undercut anchors FZP II per square metre were used to fasten the solid stones to the aluminium substructure. Stefan Schrag, Project Manager at fischer/BWM: “This tremendous quantity alone shows the type of load we had to fasten”.
Project manager fischer BWM facade systems
fischer’s products are of a high quality in terms of the production itself, they are also proven and tested. They also all have approvals to be able to offer the customer the necessary safety
Stephan Schrag