EG Basel Dreispitz, St. Gallen, Switzerland
Herzog & de Meuron, Basel, Switzerland
“Helsinki Dreispitz” is the first residential building on the Dreispitz site and encompasses 41 rental flats, as well as a storage area and offices. A juxtaposition of living, working and culture manifests itself in the Dreispitz area in general, as well as within this building. The storage area accommodates not only Herzog & de Meuron's comprehensive archives, but also a collection of artworks belonging to the company. Thanks to specially designed cabinets and display cases, all models in the archives can be seen and easily accessed. The offices are currently also used by Herzog & de Meuron.
Defined by a striking form that narrows towards the top, the building is 40 m tall and divided into a base structure and an upper structure. The raw concrete facade is marked by horizontal formwork. Over the years, rain will run down the surface, causing it to resemble the structure of bark. The few large facade openings in the base structure provide daylight for the archivists and students who work there.
The mostly closed outer walls reinforce the base structure. The upper structure is reinforced by built-in concrete cores between the floor slab and ceiling above the third floor. This installation enables the dimensions of the cores to be reduced, in favour of living space. A wide-meshed concrete grid envelops the upper structure and protectively encloses the balconies. The complex differential movements between the different building sections require the facade to be completely decoupled from the building shell by means of plain bearings. Here, this is the only way to realise the seamless exposed-concrete design.