High density, low values
The project extends over two adjoining plots which have different owners: Credit Suisse Anlagestiftung, Zurich and Migros Pensionskasse MPK. For town planning and practical reasons the two clients have decided in favour of a complex covering both plots. The proximity to the city centre and its increasing densification provide an opportunity to emphasise the urban character here. The site accommodates four structures (buildings 1, 2, 3, 4) which, despite their different shapes, form an integrated whole thanks to their common orthogonal arrangement and reciprocal alignment.
Their location, shape and height define the external and intermediary zones that connect all four buildings in variety of different ways. An (American) vertical space thus opens up between the high-rise and the first residential block, while the classical European point de vue comes into play with the cross building that forms the eastern end of the ensemble.
However, it would not be a quarter designed by Baumschlager Eberle if the relationship between the buildings were not to incorporate a tapering or extension of the perspectives with almost Baroque-like momentum. The facades are different in all the buildings, although they do adhere to a classical set of shapes that derives its variety from the interplay between the open and the closed and between supports and weights. The outcome is an architectural style that has a great deal to do with memory. The Latin verb monere, to remember, leads inevitably to the noun monumentum.
The attitude towards the monumentality of the quarter on the European Bridge therefore reflects very clearly the collective memory as opposed to the personal memory of the observer. Moreover, the external envelopes are also useful. The urban density and the rear-ventilated facades are major factors in reducing energy consumption to the Minergy standard.
Gert WaldenLocation: Zurich, Switzerland Architect: Baumschlager Eberle Client: Credit Suisse, Anlagestiftung Real, Estate Switzerland, Migros Pensionskasse Project architect: Marc Fisler Assistance: Stephan Strässle, Hongyan Kong, Christian Näff General contractor: Senn BPM Landscape architect: Sutter Gartendesign Structural engineer: Jäger Partner Building technology: Kalt + Halbeisen, Ingenieurbüro AG Electrical consultant: Enerpeak Engineering AG Site area: 17.500 m2 Area of building: 3.220 m² Gross floor area: 35.460 m2 Net floor area: 27.135 m2 Building volume: 119.225 m³ Commencement of design: 2005 Commencement of work: 2008 Completion: 2010