Location: Zurich, Switzerland
Project Year: 2011
Photographs: Tonatiuh Ambrosetti, Walter Mair, Lukas Lenherr
From the architect. The building can be seen as a collage of a selection of typical housing types found in the immediate surroundings of the plot. The types are stacked vertically due to the small footprint of the plot, with each type presenting a different typology vis-à-vis its outside spaces and views, according to the level at which it is situated.
Could the 'Fünf Häuser' be seen as an assembly of helvetic typologies? It would seem that the play of scales within the project, through the use of oversized window frames, excess of balconies and the generous plantations, dares a hint of irony towards the plethora of "typical" typologies. However, by stacking each of these types, one on top of the other, the result offers a rather surprising take on the rather challenging task of building a multi-storey residential typology and offers an alternative to the ever-expanding Swiss suburban sprawl. By considering the suburb as a new laboratory for experimental typologies, 'Fünf Häuser' is an invitation for more density, social interaction and architectural diversity - more quality urban in the semi-urban.