30,000 SF Commercial, Sustainability


Rapperswill-Jona, Switzerland

The project, located at the shores of the Obersee in Switzerland, houses the headquarters of the internationally recognized landscape architecture firm Enea Garden Design. It emerges from the site as a wooden volume, discrete and elegant, and blends with the landscape as it responds to the natural environment, boundary lines and zoning conditions.

The program includes greenhouses, warehouses, workshops, showrooms and administrative areas. The sequence of these components contributes to the volumetric arrangement of the building – all areas are connected by a service corridor that runs along the building and organizes not only the circulation between spaces, but the production line of the company itself.

The building derives its form from programmatic and site conditions – on one hand, the flow of the processes and program required in the program and their architectural resolution generate a long and low building broken where access points are needed, on the other hand, natural site conditions such as illumination and wind, the service access and the necessity of differentiating front and back – entrance and service areas – make the long mass the appropriate response. Its architectural simplicity is reinforced by the necessity of architectural sobriety and respect towards the elements and nature at the site.

The materials used look forward to merge with the natural environment externally – in esthetical terms, as well as internally – in functional terms. Energy efficiency is decisive in the design process, so the project, consequently, is based entirely on the idea of taking advantage of natural resources such as natural light, natural insulating systems and natural energy conservation systems such as geothermal exchange, green roofs, etc. ’Green’ materials such as reclaimed wood and energy efficient fixtures were used for a greater building performance.

Principal in charge: Chad Oppenheim
Project Manager: Juan Calvo
Project Contributors: Juan López, Santhosh Shanmugam, Beat Huesler

Renderers: Martin Rütschi

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