Arcadia am Albis
Halter AG / Immobilien
GFA 12'000 sqm
Müller Illien Landschaftsarchitekten
Müller Illien Landschaftsarchitekten, Zürich
The urban periphery is a space of wishes – to live in the greenness of the countryside and in manageable village structures – and of necessities – space and accessibility at reasonable prices. Multiplied as the population grows, these wishes and necessities make the periphery into an agglomeration.
But how can it be insured that the agglomeration can still fairly balance these demands with the increasing pressure that comes with growth? Instead of urban sprawl, we should strive to achieve an enrichment of multifaceted, intimate spaces, an intensification of possible relationships, and a densification of scenic experiences.
A diverse, connected, densely scenic Arcadia!
A clear structure of alleyways will be enlarged through varied paths into green spaces. Plazas provide orientation, while public islands of trees achieve intimacy. Loosely arranged buildings with generous, private outdoor spaces stand between these like the islands of an archipelago. The settlement thus integrates itself into the texture of the surroundings and also naturally complements the existing multi-family homes.
The peculiarities of the local building codes allow for graded, starkly differentiated volumes with many recesses and large surfaces. The outer shell made of wood functions as a wall on the northern façade and as a balustrade around the balcony and terraces on the southern façade. It unifies the many private areas and draws clear building shapes. The inner facade of the balconies is made of façade panels ventilated from behind and is visually placed back through coloration. This circulating room level enlarges the apartments with private, diverse, useful exterior rooms. The room level continues on the ground level in the landscape. Freely formed exterior areas are meshed within the surrounding area. A landscaped transition area avoids the typical hedge structures.
The apartments on the lower level are generally intended for families. Two additional levels with large apartments allow for a multiplicity of user groups and uses. The two top levels include living spaces for small families, seniors, or singles. The buildings are organized around two public areas, to which a visual reference always exists. The circles of tress offer spaces for children to play or seniors to chat. There is an additional ring in the east next to the parking lot. The entire site is daring and dense, yet it remains clearly arranged.
The required roof surfaces and sensor locations for the 2sol energy system are available. The system enables a slim design with a comparatively small thickness of insulation. The facades are generously glazed; to the south they are quite open, in the north somewhat more closed.