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Project Details
  • DATE : -
  • STATUS : Competition
  • LOCATION : Basel, Switzerland

Project info


MEETME@HOCHBERGLI.BS (play on words: [mi:t mi:] - 'rent me' and 'meet me') is an innovative housing project that takes all facets of sustainability into consideration. It is based on the idea that sustainable development can only be achieved through the simultaneous and equal implementation of environmental, economic, architectural/urban planning and social objectives. Only in this way can the ecological, economic and social performance of a society be ensured and improved. The various aspects are mutually dependent. The residential development should be integrated into the urban fabric, ensure a social mix and be sustainable on several levels. The project is therefore aimed at different groups of people: People living alone, people from different backgrounds, people in different life situations with different social skills and housing needs, but who independently have a need for social communication, shared activities and neighborly support. Due to the digitalization of modern times, the location of the physical workplace no longer has the same significance. Everyone can do their work from home or from anywhere, as long as the technical requirements can be met. The boundaries between home and work are becoming increasingly blurred. Cost-intensive workplaces no longer need to be provided. The capital outlay to buy or rent office buildings, the energy costs and the conditioning of the working environment can be reduced by working from home or in coworking spaces. The design of MEETME@HOCHBERGLI.BS was strongly influenced by the Gottlieb Duttweiler Institute's study 'Microliving, urban living in the 21st centuryʼ (authors: Stefan Breit and Detlef Gürtler). On the one hand, the constantly changing needs of people living alone were taken into account, but on the other hand, all possible solo typologies were also considered: 'Students' form the first important group of people living alone. They are between 16 and 30 years old and often come to study in a foreign city where they know few people. 'The modest' (also known as minimalists) live consciously, avoid excess and voluntarily forego living space without economic pressure. 'Multi-locals' are people who live in several places at the same time, but also those who constantly change their place of residence. 'Solo women and solo men' are the not-yet-fixed. They stand for an ideal of independence, are flexible and enjoy the freedom of not having to make any commitments or compromises. 'The G-adults' are adults who are separated or divorced ('suddenly single') or are reorienting themselves. 'The elderly' spend a large part of their time within their own four walls. They are hardly mobile, stay where they are and have an affinity for external services. This is by far the largest group among those living alone.

Urban Development And Architecture

The building at Hochbergerstrasse 158 was built in 1965 as an administrative building for the administration of the Swiss Rhine ports. It is located on the small river Wiese between the village center of Kleinhüningen and the port area, which will develop into a new district on the Westquai from 2029. The site is directly adjacent to the industrial zone and has no open space. Due to the planned expansion and relocation of part of the Rhine port, the areas close to the Rhine on Klybeckquai and the Westquai peninsula will undergo further urban development over the next few years. To the south, the property benefits from a view of the green riverbank of the Wiese. There are public parking spaces in front of the building. A planned bridge to accommodate public transport and non-motorized traffic will connect Hochbergerstrasse with the municipality of Huningue on the opposite side of the Rhine in France. The design is based on the findings of the present study by Buchner Bründler Architekten AG and envisages that the existing building will be dismantled down to the load-bearing elements. The access zone will be reorganized so that a new access corridor (pergola) can be inserted on the north side of the building. The landscaped access corridor is spacious and will become a new meeting zone for residents. In the second part of the aforementioned study 'Microliving, urban living in the 21st centuryʼ, various theses on the future are discussed. The findings have been incorporated into the project: 'Collective Diversity' forms of living are becoming more diverse, collective forms of living are gaining in importance. The standard model of family living is becoming rarer, new lifestyles and family structures require and enable new forms of housing. 'Peak Home' Housing functions are being deconstructed, there is a co-evolution between home, neighborhood and city. 'Platform Living' Living is becoming more flexible and the property is also becoming a little mobile. Although apartments must remain immobile as hardware, they can become more flexible as software. Platform strategies for real estate can maximize flexibility and mobility. Augmented convenience technology can turn living into a highly personalized experience. Developments in areas such as virtual reality, voice recognition or chatbots can help make living a tailored experience with maximum convenience. 'Branded living' Living is becoming a brand. In future, people will therefore live less with a street and house number and more with labels: in the James, on the Hunziker site, at the PWG, in Hochbergli. Market potential is opening up for international residential networks

Space Program

The five-storey residential complex comprises a total of 40 residential units (35 apartments and a cluster apartment with 5 studios). Based on the highest possible quality for all apartments, the individual rooms are oriented towards the best side in terms of sunlight, exposure and views. The structural grid of the building allows for a typology of 'living through'. This results in 1- to 3.5-room apartments with different layouts and sizes ranging from 27 m2 to 72 m2, as well as a cluster apartment. Within this 252 m2 cluster apartment, there are 5 studios (with their own bathroom and kitchenette), a shared living room, a laundry room, a dining room and a spacious shared kitchen. However, the room program is not limited to living alone. On the first basement floor there is a naturally lit communal room of approx. 91 m2 (incl. kitchen, wet room and chair storage), which can be used for various purposes and initiatives. Spacious coworking spaces on the ground floor and first floor expand the building's offerings not only for tenants, but also for residents of the neighborhood. With around 36 naturally lit workstations, 5 meeting rooms, kitchenettes, wet rooms, a multifunctional room and a terrace, freelance and small business activities are facilitated and promoted. The premises are perfect for start-up companies with 5-15 employees as well as for self-employed people in all professional fields. Informal contacts are encouraged in a total of approx. 700 m2 of open office space. With around 330 m2 of space, the green terrace should become a popular meeting place for different groups of people. The terrace is accessible to all tenants, but the coworking spaces on the ground floor and the cluster apartment also have a direct connection. Each apartment has a spacious cellar of approx. 15 m2 on the 2nd floor. Further cellar areas, hobby rooms and archives are also available. Green roofs and façades ensure well-being by optimizing the working and living environment and provide natural protection against heat and cold. In addition to improving the natural climate, this also contributes to the attractiveness of the communal areas. The green pergolas make it possible to combine the apartment partitions throughout the building, allowing larger apartments to be placed in between (such as on the attic floor). In this way, the building can provide additional apartments for shared flats and family apartments to ensure a mix in the district.

Sustainable Through Diversity: 'the New Housing Typology'

MEETME@HOCHBERGLI.CH is an attempt to develop a new housing typology, influenced by modern living trends. Two trends dominate future living: minimalist and affordable apartments in attractive neighborhoods and the influence of a digital lifestyle. On the one hand, the new typology offers affordable small apartments, but on the other, the same comfort as conventional apartments, thus ensuring a high-quality living and quality of life. The combination of living and working in separate areas, but within one building or neighborhood, is implemented in this project. The project is characterized by additional space for services or commerce, including workplaces for tenants and for external residents who live outside the residential complex. The structure of the working world is changing and the trend is towards a closer connection between living and working. In the future, workplaces will more frequently be located directly in the residential areas of communal projects. This offers a starting point for further developing the apartment typology for a mix of uses within individual residential units. The conditions must be created for everyone to be able to participate fully in social life, regardless of age or physical limitations. Accessibility in all areas of life is an important part of the building in order to be able to exercise this right. Accessibility is fully achieved on all upper and lower floors. As the name suggests, MEETME@HOCHBERGLI.CH is also a meeting place for creative people, i.e. a creative quarter. This is where people with innovative, meaningful ideas from different walks of life and industries come together, often across generations and from different cultures: players from culture and business, art and education, business and voluntary work, established companies and start-ups. The flexible coworking spaces were designed to create an inspiring atmosphere for creatives from all professional fields. With a coworking space and a communal area of over 800 m2, the building adapts to new lifestyles and residents' needs and offers opportunities for social contact, work collaborations of all kinds and shared activities. However, privacy is not lost as a result. The type of apartment developed combines elements of a communal housing project with those of a shared apartment. In contrast to the communal housing project, private residential units and communal areas are more closely interlinked. This design allows for maximum communal living and at the same time enables people to withdraw into their own complete apartment. The aim of MEETME@HOCHBERGLI.CH is not to force people to live together, but to create as many levels of personal living areas as possible (private: within the residential units; semi-private within the cluster apartment; semi-private within the building: within the communal areas; public within the building: within the coworking areas).

Sustainable Through Innovation: 'the High-tech Loggia Apartment'

The layout of the apartment units is based on the existing column grid. The apartment floor plans have been developed according to the concept of 'living through'. The open floor plans of the apartments have no circulation areas and, despite the clear structure, leave a wide range of possible uses open. The apartments are oriented on two sides (south-north) and the living spaces span the entire width of the building. This arrangement allows for additional lighting and ventilation. The various rooms can thus flow into one another without fixed boundaries and the small apartments appear more spacious. The standard apartments consist of a bedroom, a bathroom and a living/cooking area. The bedrooms face north towards the arcades and thus enjoy a quiet northern light. The living rooms (incl. kitchen) are south-facing, very well lit and enjoy a beautiful view of the green riverbank of the meadow. Dispensing with classic small loggias ('utility balconies') brings enormous advantages: on the one hand, no valuable living space is lost, and on the other hand, the entire apartment can be used as a loggia. When open, the planned tilt-and-lift windows transform the living areas into spacious loggias. All the glass elements can be opened and the view is not restricted by profiles. The occupants can look out freely and undisturbed. A textile screen inside the box-type window provides protection from the sun and glare. Despite the compact space, each apartment has a high-quality bathroom suitable for disabled and wheelchair users. The bathrooms are partially glazed (optionally with curtains) so that the natural light in the bedrooms is not impaired. However, the innovative technology of electrically adjustable glass ensures privacy in the bathroom at all times. The kitchens consist of a maximum of 6 units (incl. washing tower). In contrast to the room program, the washing function takes place within each residential unit. Modern social life no longer takes place in the laundry rooms, but in high-quality communal spaces, coworking areas, open spaces, etc. The current pandemic has also shown that, in an emergency, all everyday activities must also take place within four walls. The compact apartments call for innovative furnishing concepts. The project proposes optimizing not only the kitchen, but also a large part of the bedroom with built-in furniture. This allows optimal use of space and also provides significantly more storage space. Modern city life is becoming ever more dynamic, traditional family relationships are constantly changing and house moves are becoming more frequent. These frequent moves consume resources and energy, and new furniture is usually bought again and again, which has economic and ecological consequences. For these reasons, the project is trying to develop a standard floor plan that can make optimum use of the living space. In addition to the built-in furniture, a foldaway bed can also be provided, for example, so that the bedroom can also be used for other purposes (e.g. as a home office).

Sustainable Through Ecology

The project is characterized by the fact that it meets the requirements for economic efficiency, user comfort and health with the lowest possible total energy requirement, including production, use and disposal. The selected materials and constructions have a life cycle of at least 30 years. The sustainable ceramic façade is architecturally very sophisticated, but also has an even longer service life of over 50 years. This demonstrates the attention paid to materials, production, safety and durability, as resistance to rain, frost and chemical influences is practically unlimited. By including the façade material at the end of its life cycle, for example as an aggregate for new elements, the claim of the material cycle is also preserved. The north façade is secured against falling by a stainless steel net, which is also the supporting structure for growing plants. The net is attached to horizontal, twelve-millimetre-thick edge cables, which are anchored to the projecting front sides of the ceiling panels. he green façade offers numerous ecological, aesthetic, practical and also economic advantages. In addition to their visual quality, large-scale green façades also offer ecological benefits: In summer, they help to cool the building by shading the wall surfaces and generating evaporative cooling. This reduces the need for cooling inside the building and the rooms are kept at a natural temperature - leading to energy and cost savings. The roof of the multifunctional space (former parking garage) is extensively greened and penetrated by accessible skylights. On the one hand, these measures create attractive garden areas, while on the other hand they allow quiet light to penetrate into the multifunctional space below. Energy measures and building services The existing windows and concrete parapets must be completely removed and replaced for energy reasons. They will be replaced by floor-to-ceiling windows. A complete, comprehensive energy upgrade of the façades, roof surfaces, windows and floor is planned. With regard to the building services, the project is based on the study by Kalt + Halbeisen Ingenieurbüro AG: Heating Heat generation: In this variant, heat generation by means of district heating remains untouched in the existing 3rd basement floor. The supply line to the adjacent building, which runs through the basement floors, also remains in place. Heat distribution: The heat is distributed from the district heating transfer station via the existing heating distributor in the technical center on the 3rd basement floor. Heat dissipation systems: Heat should generally be dissipated via radiators within the apartments. Ventilation Natural ventilation: In principle, no mechanical ventilation system should be provided in the building within the apartments. The apartments are to be ventilated and ventilated naturally only. The floor plans of the apartments are always designed in such a way that cross-ventilation is easily possible. Kitchens: For energy reasons, recirculation hoods with activated charcoal filters are planned for the activation kitchens. The operation of a recirculation hood is independent of the room air and therefore has no influence on the room climate. Sanitary The water distributor for the wet room and kitchen is provided next to the WC in the wet room. The PEX distributors are equipped with a shut-off valve and a water meter for cold water and one for hot water. The PEX distributors must be accessible through an inspection opening. The sanitary appliances are connected from the distributors.

Plan and sketches of the project.

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