Zürich New Town, Switzerland
Zürich West is a former Industrial district. After many industrial companies left the city, this area was perfect to extend the city centre.
Instead of tearing off this part of the urban history of Zürich they worked with the industrial architecture and created a neighbourhood full of life.
Beside stores, bars and restaurants, there are offices, apartment buildings, a theatre and a University.
The new Zürich West should serve as a leading example for many cities.
Zurich Old Town, Switzerland
We arrived in this wonderful city on a friday night and the first imprssion I had was the `Sechseläutenplatz´- the main square in front of the Opera. It was full of different groups of people who had brought their own music, food and drinks. The atmosphere was incredible. If felt like sitting in a livingroom with all different kind of inspiring people and no one felt disturbed by anything. This refreshing unique atmosphere was all over the city and was stimulating all different kinds of urban situations.
In the capital of the Kanton Graubünden the architect Peter Zumthor has designed two buildings. The first one is a home for senior citizens, built in 1993. The mainly used materials are wood, glass and whinstone. The shelters for Roman ruins were built in 1989 out of wood and metall. Their interior is not thermally separated from the outside wherefore the old wood is still in a very good condition.
Chapel Sogn Benedetg, Graubünden, Switzerland
This small chapel was built in the 1980s in the Weiler Sogn Benedetg in Graubünden, Switzerland. It is not easy to find it and to get there.
There was an old baroque chapel, which was destroyed by avalanches at the beginning of the 1980s. The convent wanted a new and conteporary chapel, that was designed by the architect Peter Zumthor who won the competition.
Vals is a quite small and very beautiful village in a valey of Graubünden. Many who are interested in architecture may know it because of the famous Therme Vals designed by Peter Zumthor. The therme is tucked in the lanscape and the rest of the facade is cladded with the local stone Gneiss. Unfortunately the surrounding hotels were built with less awareness for the spectacular landscape.
A quite new building is the luxury holiday house Villa Vals, that is stuck into the mountain.
These three holiday houses were built in Weiler Leis in a hight of 1500m over sea level. The architect Peter Zumthor has done a lot of research about wood buildings before designing these inventional houses. Their structure is made out of different wooden sheets. More than 5.000 massive wooden beams, which were prefabricated and cut, based on digital drawings, were used.
Two of these luxury holiday houses can be rented.
This part of Zürich, the biggest city of Switzerland, is a former industrial area. After a lot of processing industry had left the place the city realized the potential of it and took the great chance to develop another city centre.
With modifications, new constructions and conversion Zürich got a second centre of an industrial flair. The first buildings of this big project were finished at the beginning of the 1990s.
Today there are hotels, a theatre, some famous jazz clubs and bars, apartments, flats and gastronomy.