Tamedia Office Building

The new Tamedia office building by Shigeru Ban was opened on July 9 in Zurich, Switzerland. Simon Wacker from the executing architectural practice IttenBrechbühl chooses a few drawings and pictures and answers some of our questions.
Night view
How did the site influence your design?
The "site" is Switzerland. Shigeru Ban works with wood all around the world, and Swiss wood workers realized one of his projects roughly two years ago in South Korea. According to Ban, wood engineering in Switzerland is at the highest level. Therefore, it is not surprising that he uses this building material here.
How did the contractor, the client or the future users influence your design?
The requirements were that it should be an office building with a maximum space utilization, a strong work place appeal and average costs. The required flexibility in a media company goes without saying.
Were there any major project changes between the first draft and the completed building?
No, Shigeru Ban's project idea was implemented very consistently. Only the regulatory restrictions - especially with regards to fire protection - were a challenge for the architects and the general contractor. The long lasting collaboration with the authorities was characterized by mutual respect and understanding. The attitude of "together we can do this - even though we don't know how yet" shared by those involved is the premise for the success of such a project.
Did current energetic, constructional or design tendencies influence the project?
In a media company, people often work at night. In the dark, the building will show its inner life through the "radiance" of its wooden structure.
Which product or material was responsible for the success of the completed building?
Wood is used as a bearing structure and is exhausted to the limit statically. The wood splices have no metal parts, and the combination of the visible wood structure and the glass facade is extraordinary. The intermediate space along the Sihl river extends across all floors. It is on the one hand equipped with lounges whose facade can be opened completely by means of lifting elements and elements that layer its parts vertically; on the other, this room with cascade stairs serves as a space for circulation.

We are happy to receive your comments and criticism!
Two-storey lounge
Lounge open-closed
Floor plan
Büroneubau Tamedia

Zürich ZH


Direktauftrag als Generalplaner und Local Architect für Shigeru Ban

Tamedia AG, Zürich

Architekt: Shigeru Ban Architects, Tokyo

Gesamtleitung Planung: IttenBrechbühl AG, Zürich

Haustechnik: 3-Plan Haustechnik AG, Zürich
Bauingenieur Holz: SJB Kempter Fitze AG, Frauenfeld

Bauingenieur Beton: Urech Bärtschi Maurer AG, Zürich

Bauphysik: Gartenmann Engineering AG, Zürich

Fassadenplaner: Feroplan AG, Zürich

Lichtplanung: Ernst Basler Partner AG, Zürich

Geologie: Sieber Cassina AG, Zürich

Gesamtleitung Ausführung
HRS Real Estate AG, Zürich

Ca. 39‘000m3

Massgeblich beteiligte Unternehmer

Holzbau: Blumer Lehmann AG, Gossau

Fassade: Aepli AG, Gossau

Innere Verglasungen: Blessart AG, Rüti



Didier Boy de la Tour