THINK ARCHITECTURE: House next to the church - best architects 24


House next to the church

best architects 24

multi-family homes


Zurich, Switzerland


Simone Bossi


The neighbouring church and the generous green spaces with tall trees that surround it characterise the immediate surroundings of the site. Otherwise, the context is very heterogeneous, with older and newer core zone buildings of varying quality and expression. The project sees itself as a continuation of the old, characteristic core zone buildings, but rather than copying them seeks to reinterpret them in a contemporary way. The new building is clearly subordinate to the church but adopts the gesture of the enclosed church area and creates another «hortus conclusus» with lush greenery. The centrally arranged apartment building bends inward on four sides, reacting with this gesture to a mighty beech tree as well as to the lower terrain in that spot. The forward and backward undulation of the volume makes the building appear smaller and enables it to be harmoniously embedded in the context as well as creating attractive open spaces on all sides. The four apartments per floor are organised around a central stairwell, with an attractive atrium at the centre of the cross. All units benefit from exciting interior sight lines and a three-sided orientation due to the refined floor plan design. The rammed concrete walls – for both the façade and the surrounding wall – adopt the grey to beige tones that have evolved in the surroundings. The rammed concrete is complemented by vertically grouped windows in matte dark brown metal and a metal roof made of pre-weathered copper.