Ricola Kräuterzentrum / Herzog & de Meuron

Ricola Kräuterzentrum / Herzog & de Meuron

© Iwan Baan© Iwan BaanCourtesy of RicolaCourtesy of Ricola+ 11

  • Architects: Herzog & de Meuron
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2014
  • Photographs photographs:  Iwan Baan
  • Rammed Earth Facade Specialist :Lehm Ton Erde Baukunst GmbH, Schlins, Austria Martin Rauch, Thomas Honermann, Hanno Burtscher
  • Design Consultant:Herzog & de Meuron, Basel, Switzerland
  • Executive Architect:Herzog & de Meuron, Basel, Switzerland
  • General Planning:Kundert Planer AG, Schlieren, Switzerland
  • Cost Consultant:Kundert Planer AG, Schlieren, Switzerland / Rapp Arcoplan AG, Basel, Switzerland
  • Electrical Engineering:Pfister + Gloor Engineering AG, Baden-Dättwil, Switzerland Selmoni Ingenieur AG, Basel, Switzerland
  • Hvac Engineering:Cofely AG, Basel, Switzerland
  • Structural Engineering:Schnetzer Puskas AG, Basel, Switzerland
  • Engineering Design:Transsolar Energietechnik GmbH, Stuttgart, Germany
  • Plant Layout:Kundert Planer AG, Schlieren, Switzerland
  • Acoustics:Martin Lienhard, Langenbruck, Switzerland
  • Building Physics:Zimmermann + Leuthe GmbH, Aetigkofen, Switzerland Transsolar Energietechnik GmbH, Stuttgart, Germany
  • Civil Engineering:Schnetzer Puskas Ing. , Basel, Switzerland
  • Facade Engineering:Emmer Pfenninger Partner AG, Münchenstein, Switzerland Lehm Ton Erde Baukunst GmbH, Schlins, Austria
  • Geometrician:Peter Jäckle AG, Laufen, Switzerland
  • Geotechnical Consultant:Kiefer & Studer AG, Reinach, Switzerland
  • Sustainability Consultant:PE CEE GmbH, Vienna, Austria
  • General Contractor:Priora Generalunternehmung AG, Basel, Switzerland
  • Carpentry:Sebastian Jukic GmbH, Zofingen, Switzerland
  • Electrical:Selmoni Ingenieur AG, Basel, Switzerland
  • Elevators:Schindler Aufzüge AG, Basel, Switzerland
  • Facade:Lehm Ton Erde GmbH, Schlins, Austria Krapf AG, Engelburg, Switzerland
  • Fire Protection:AB Brandschutz AG, Winterthur, Switzerland
  • Flooring / Subflooring:Weiss + Appetito AG, Bern, Switzerland
  • Insulation:Zimmerei Meury, Zwingen, Switzerland
  • Interior Doors:RWD Schlatter AG, Dietikon, Switzerland
  • Locksmithing:Decker Nova Metallbau AG, Aesch, Switzerland
  • Mobile Partion Walls:Arotec AG, Ballwil, Switzerlang
  • Paint Work:Malergeschäft Hügli, Brislach, Switzerland
  • Planting:Vogt Landschaftsarchitekten AG , Zürich, Switzerland
  • Plaster Work (Interior):Geb. Oser AGNenzlingen, Nenzlingen, Switzerland
  • Plumbing:Klima AG, Basel, Switzerland
  • Roofing:Marx AG, Muttenz, Switzerland
  • Security System:Bucher/Gabele, Laufen, Switzerland Kaba, Rümlang, Switzerland
  • Shell Work:BL Fenster, Veltheim, Switzerland
  • Steel Work:Preiswerk + Esser AG, Pratteln, Switzerland
  • Excavation:Jeker Aushub, Abbruch, Tief- und Strassenbau, Büsserach, Switzerland
  • Exterior Doors, Fire Gates:Hörmann Schweiz AG, Oensingen, Switzerland
  • Lifting Ramps:Trapo Küng AG, Basel, Switzerland
  • Pile Work:Ghelma AG Spezialtiefbau, Meiringen, Switzerland
  • Structural Work:Müller-Steinag Element AG, Rickenbach LU, Switzerland Müller Bau AG, Laufen, Switzerland
  • Client:Ricola AG, Laufen, Switzerland
  • Client Representative :Dr. Hans Batzer, Ricola AG, Laufen, Switzerland
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© Iwan Baan
© Iwan Baan

Text description provided by the architects. Architecture and Landscape

The new Kräuterzentrum (herb center) is situated like an erratic block in the midst of a landscape dotted with conventional industrial buildings. Its elongated shape echoes the pathways and the hedges that have long been a distinctive feature of this area. The length of the building also reflects the steps involved in the industrial processing of herbs, from drying and cutting to blending and storing. The new processing plant enables Ricola to integrate these important steps in the company's own in-house production.

© Iwan Baan
© Iwan Baan

Architecture as Landscape

The Kräuterzentrum is built largely out of locally sourced earth; it is like a geometrical segment of landscape with its dimensions and archaic impact heightened by the radical choice of material. Herbs and earth define the purpose-built, distinctive character of the center, following in the footsteps of Ricola‘s other buildings: the fully automated storage building of 1987, the production and storage building of 1993 in Mulhouse-Brunstatt with its screenprint façade and the glazed marketing headquarters of 1999 in Laufen. These buildings not only embody Ricola's exceptional philosophy and commitment to the environment, they each make a striking contribution to their locations.

© Iwan Baan
© Iwan Baan

The delivery entrance and warehouse sections of the herb center’s façade are monolithic, with the loam walls visible in the interior as well. The prefabricated earth elements are manufactured in a nearby factory out of ingredients extracted from local quarries and mines. Clay, marl and material excavated on site are mixed and compacted in a formwork and then layered in blocks to build the walls. Thanks to the plasticity of the loam, the seams can be retouched giving the overall structure a homogeneous appearance. To arrest erosion caused by wind and rain, a trass mortar achieved mixing volcanic tuff (trass) with lime, is compacted every 8 layers of earth directly in the formwork. Large round windows illuminate the rooms. The façade is self-supporting and simply linked to the concrete loadbearing structure of the interior.

Energy and Sustainability

Energy and sustainability are not simply treated as technical auxiliaries; they are built into the architecture and essential features of the project as a whole. Earth as a material that regulates humidity has a positive, sustainable effect on the use of energy and overall climate control. Photovoltaic modules on the roof and the use of waste heat from the production center nearby also contribute to improving the ecological balance of the Kräuterzentrum. Visitors will be able to watch the processing and blending of the herbs in a special visitor center on the top floor.

Courtesy of Ricola
Courtesy of Ricola

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Project location

Address:Laufen, Switzerland

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Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
About this office
Cite: "Ricola Kräuterzentrum / Herzog & de Meuron" 28 May 2015. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/634724/ricola-krauterzentrum-herzog-and-de-meuron> ISSN 0719-8884

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