Luca Selva Architekten: Conversion of a printing plant into loft apartments - best architects 22

Luca Selva Architekten

Conversion of a printing plant into loft apartments

best architects 22

renovation and addition


Basel, Switzerland


Adriano Biondo


An existing print shop building in the centre of Basel, which is divided into a production hall and an office wing, is being converted into residential use. The character of the existing building from the 1960s, determined by its industrial use, becomes a supporting design theme and remains perceptible even with the new use. The clarity of the supporting structure, mushroom head columns, ribbed ceilings and special features such as the steel construction of the shed roof are supplemented with a few new elements and materials, accommodating nine loft flats into the existing volume. The wonderful shed hall with a ceiling height of up to seven metres and the office floors with room heights of up to 3,5 metres formed the starting point for simple spatial configurations that transfer the flow and generosity of the spaces into the new use. The flats divide the shed hall lengthwise and allow its entire depth to be perceived. This results in flats with a depth of almost 40 metres, divided by the shed ceiling and atriums. The existing materials are supplemented; the floor is finished with floorboards made of rough sawn oak, which underlines the unpretentious character of the former functional building. The existing façade will be repaired and the fine profiling can be retained thanks to the introduction of a cold loggia to carry the spirit of the 1960s into a new era.