Graber & Steiger Architekten
New headquarters for Stahlton Bauteile AG
best architects 14
Dominique Marc Wehrli
Contrasting with the dynamic traffic flows and anonymous patchwork of the industrial zone, a serene tower block rises up with poised self-assurance. As a new company headquarters, the building lends a distinctive identity to Stahlton Bauteile AG, while also creating a striking »landmark« at the entrance to the town of Frick. The simple principle of alternately stacking building arms establishes a compelling spatial structure that manages with astounding simplicity to both provide clear orientation and at the same time stage appealing views out over the Frick Valley. The work spaces are arranged around central courtyards protected from noise, which zone the storeys and as open centres promote internal communication across floors. The structure, expression and materials of the building take up and interpret central themes important to the Stahlton company. Phenomena such as load-bearing, tensioning, jointing and stacking are condensed here into a straightforward and memorable complex. A cladding of glass fibre concrete with a slight relief produced by the company itself envelopes the building and lends it plasticity through a vibrant play of light and shadow.