Client: Canton of Basel
Status: Competition (2014)
Clasification: 1 prize
Location: Basel, Switzerland
Coordinates: 47.569162, 7.573206
Climate: Oceanic / maritime, Temperate
Materials: Brick, Concrete
Environments: Railway, Urban
Scale: 35.500 ㎡ Large
Types: Cultural, Museum
By bringing together the State Archives and the Museum of Natural History at a single location a unique information storehouse is created. The elongated site along the railway is occupied by a series of building volumes placed next to each other. The tall, slender tower provides an urban symbol for both institutions. The principle of adding and layering serves as a leitmotif that is recognisable from outside and is continued in the internal structure of spaces.
A generously sized entrance hall strengthens the joint presence of both institutions, but the question of the individual identities is of central importance to the design: both functions are made clearly recognisable and perceptible by the way in which spaces are unambiguously allocated within the overall system. The State Archives extends along the entire length of the building in the form of a glazed top floor. The rooms of the museum are on the floors below.
Through the concept of a twin-storey, wide-spanning shelf the idea of the museum as a storehouse of knowledge is translated into a concrete physical and architectural structure.