07 March 2016

Vetropack site in Bülach North: plans for new urban district take shape

Partnered by landowners Logis Suisse and Baugenossenschaft Glattal Zürich (BGZ), Steiner AG is building a new urban quarter on the former Vetropack site in Bülach North. Today marks the first public presentation of the 11 entries to the international urban design competition for development of the site. The project – which, with its high construction density, should inspire future urban design concepts – encompasses some 600 apartments as well as over 20,000 m2 of industrial and service space.

For 111 years, the approx. 42,000 m2 site of Vetropack (originally Glashütte Bülach) was used to manufacture glass containers for food, drinks and pharmaceuticals. The plot, to the north of Bülach town centre and close to the railway station, fell into disuse when production ceased at the end of February 2002. Logis Suisse AG and Baugenossenschaft Glattal Zürich acquired the site in June 2012 and signed an exclusive project development and implementation agreement with Steiner AG. Steiner then proceeded to organize a single-stage urban design competition. With the masterplan having taken legal effect in December 2015, the proposals of all 11 invited international architect teams will now be unveiled to the general public.

Exacting brief
The transformation of a 42,000 m2 industrial site into a compact, high-grade living and working environment is a daunting challenge. One of the key objectives of the competition from the very outset was thus to reconcile the wide-ranging functional requirements with top-quality urban design and compelling architecture. The judging panel, comprising client representatives, consultants and experts, singled out the proposal submitted by Duplex Architekten for further development, on account of its coherent solution to the brief and its vision. The scheme's convincing urban response, civic presence and dynamic quality have the potential to rejuvenate the site and create a vibrant environment through a mix of residential, service and industrial occupancies. The next milestone, submission of the planning application for the overall project, is scheduled for the end of 2016. Work is likely to start on site at the earliest in spring 2018.

Urban design concept of tomorrow
The new urban district in Bülach North will have an exceptionally high density by Swiss standards and, as such, will present a mixture of challenges and opportunities. The creation of a compact, well-designed residential development with a homely feel and high urban quality of life depends on a combination of factors: outstanding architecture, efficient transport systems, ample public open spaces, high living comfort, invigorating private retreats and communal facilities. The residential and industrial accommodation must also be intelligently configured so as to generate an interesting mix of uses, lend the neighbourhood a certain self-sufficiency, and provide future occupants with useful amenities and an attractive range of services. The remodelled Vetropack site will cater for all these criteria while according top priority to the needs of residents. By offering diverse types of accommodation, the development scheme – which includes some 400 affordable rental apartments – seeks to address large sections of the population, create a broad social mix and make the new urban quarter in Bülach North one of the most attractive living and working locations in the Zurich Unterland region.

Public display of proposals
The urban design competition entries submitted by the architects for the Vetropack site are on public display today, Monday, 7 March 2016, from 2.00 pm to 6.30 pm. Admission is free.

Showroom in Musik Hug building, eastern entrance
Schützenmattstrasse 14-16
CH-8180 Bülach

Competition entrants

The following international architectural practices took part in the competition:

·  BIG Bjarke Ingels Group, Copenhagen (DK)

·  Dominique Perrault Architecture, Paris (F)

·  Duplex Architekten, Zurich

·  Ernst Niklaus Fausch Architekten, Zurich

·  HHF Architekten, Basel

·  Holzer Kobler Architekten, Zurich

·  Knapkiewicz Fickert Architekten, Zurich

·  KSP Jürgen Engel Architekten, Cologne (D)

·  MVRDV Architekten, Rotterdam (NL)

·  pool Architekten, Zurich

·  Stefan Forster Architekten, Frankfurt/Main (D)

Steiner AG
Steiner AG, one of the leading project developers, total and general contractors (TC/GC) in Switzerland, offers comprehensive services in the fields of new constructions, refurbishment and Real Estate Development. The company, which was established in 1915, has constructed more than 1200 residential construction projects, 540 commercial properties, 45 hotels and 150 infrastructure facilities such as universities, schools, hospitals, prisons and retirement homes. Steiner AG has its headquarters in Zurich and is represented by branches in Basel, Berne, Geneva, Tolochenaz, Lucerne and St. Gallen. www.steiner.ch

Logis Suisse
Logis Suisse AG is committed to the creation and promotion of fair-priced housing. As the owner of a wide-ranging property portfolio, the company pursues a highly responsible active management policy, based on social and ecological values and spanning the entire real estate life-cycle. Logis Suisse AG was founded on 11 May 1973. Its shareholders include various foundations, ecologically committed pension funds, building cooperatives and the Swiss Confederation. The Logis Suisse AG real estate portfolio has grown steadily over the last 40 years and now comprises some 2,700 apartments at locations throughout German-speaking Switzerland. www.logis.ch

Baugenossenschaft Glattal Zürich (BGZ)
The BGZ building cooperative was founded in December 1942. As a tenant cooperative (i.e. a cooperative owned by the residents), BGZ endeavours, through mutual self-help and joint responsibility, to provide its members with contemporary, affordable living accommodation. The cooperative's activities are charitable and non-profit-oriented. BGZ owns and manages over 2,000 dwellings, mostly located in the city of Zurich. www.bg-glattal.ch

Information for the media
Claude Sulser, Head HR & Corporate Communications, Steiner AG
Tel. +41 58 445 20 12, claude.sulseranti spam bot@steineranti spam bot.ch

Jutta Mauderli, Managing Director, Logis Suisse AG
Tel. +41 79 469 84 78, jmauderlianti spam bot@logisanti spam bot.ch

Kurt Williner, Executive Board Member, Baugenossenschaft Glattal Zürich
Tel. +41 43 299 44 49, kurt.willineranti spam bot@bg-glattalanti spam bot.ch

Media Release as PDF

Competition Vetropack: well-designed residential development with a homely feel and high urban quality of life

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