Commercial and Residential Development Speich
Zurich-Wipkingen, 2011–2015
Study, 2010, 1. Prize
Ground Floor
Standard Floor

The Speich property has a special urban position at the juncture between a district of perimeter blocks and heterogeneous development at Wipkingerplatz, the Hardbrücke bridge and the riverside space, which, in urbanistic terms, called for a Janus-like building. The building responds with an expressive and independent guise, particularly through the formation of a head building on Wipkingerplatz, which reoccupies the place. On the street side, sculptural interlocking counteracts the classical tripartite division of base, midsection and top and enhances the expressiveness of the building form. On the river side, terracing of the garden, configuration of the courtyard elements as a building plinth, and planted balconies and roof terraces establish a thoroughly different character, reminiscent of vertical or hanging gardens. The facade’s ceramic cladding – inspired by the ocher-colored bricks typical of the area – contrasts with and dematerializes the bulk and weight of the built form, depending on how the light reflects off it.
Consistent with the flexibility of use required by the program, the building has been systematically liberated from binding ties to the structure. This includes the skeletal frame of reinforced concrete, the lightweight interior partitions, and suspended ceilings in some places that conceal building services installations that are otherwise exposed. Disposed this way, the living quarters explore the spatial potential of the “plan libre.”

> Site

Competition team
Ron Edelaar, Elli Mosayebi, Christian Inderbitzin, Gabi Bernath-Hauser, Michael Reiterer, Pascal Steiner

Project team
Ron Edelaar, Elli Mosayebi, Christian Inderbitzin, Michael Reiterer, Samuele Tirendi, Nina Villiger, Gabi Bernath-Hauser, Franziska Maria Singer, Simon Cheung, Matthias Alder, Joannis Nikoloudis, Moritz Leinhos

Speich Immobilien AG, Zurich

Construction Management: Caretta + Weidmann, Zurich
Landscape Architect: Ganz Landschaftsarchitekten GmbH, Zurich
Civil Engineer: Dr. Lüchinger + Meyer Bauingenieure AG, Zurich
Building Services: Planungsbüro Roman Böni GmbH, Oberentfelden
Electrical Engineer: J. Kowner AG, Zurich
Building Physics: Raumanzug GmbH, Zurich

Roland Bernath

Architekturführer Zürich, DOM publishers 2022
Architekturführer Zürich, Edition Hochparterre 2020
Zürcher Wohnungsbau 1995–2015, Quart Verlag 2017
archithese, 01/2016
Wipkingen Info, April/Mai/Juni 2012
Tages-Anzeiger, 19.3.2012
GAM.08, März 2012
www.hochparterre.ch, 6.4.2011