Buchegg Estate, Zurich , 2011–2018

In 2010, the Waidberg building cooperative decided to demolish the existing 1930s housing estate and to replace it with a new building. A competition procedure was initiated for this purpose. The topographical col Milchbuck - Bucheggplatz is a high-quality residential area with a homogeneous development structure, which is divided by a main traffic axis. Three angular buildings occupy the perimeter with a minimal footprint. The buildings accompany the streetscapes along Hofwiesenstrasse, Rötelstrasse, and Seminarstrasse; typical local building lengths are thus created. At the same time, the houses form a distinctive appearance towards Bucheggplatz. By moving away from the building line, the head building focuses on the centre of Bucheggplatz and already strengthens its presence in its current state. The noise pollution affecting the site becomes a design generator. The development of the façade is minimised, creating an urban street façade towards the noisy outside area. More public spaces such as kitchens, extra-high dining rooms and stairwells enliven the street fronts and form a hard “back” that protects private living areas. The floor plan is twisted to avoid direct views into the apartments opposite and to create a feeling of expanse. Towards the south, the apartments in front of a large, contiguous open space shielded from the noise of the streets open up to the expanse of the city.