The location of the building is at the intersection of two areas with different main directions: the Cantonal Hospital and the St. Fiden neighbourhood. Two twisted squares are the basis of the design resulting in overlaps, intersections and sunken gardens in the project.
The square is a symbol of order and solidity and the organising element of the design. It appears in scales of the basic form from the large to the small - the rooms are concentrically layered around a square core.
The lounge forms the core of the room arrangement and is designed as a place of communication. The rotation of the overall floor plan creates skylights that turn the room into a luminous body and thus into a point of orientation.
The aluminium façade has the effect of a uniform appearance of a complex spatial structure. An outer protective metal layer reveals a second glass skin by cutting into it and folding it out. The unfolded metal elements become fixed sun wings, which form a sun protection optimised to the course of the sun with maximum light incidence in the rooms. The skin as a spatial filter conveys insight and distance.
The light: sun wings - shadow play - reflections. Light becomes a connecting feature between the storeys and between the rooms.
Maximum flexibility was another aim of the design. The laboratories can be freely subdivided in a grid of 1.50 m and technical access is not linked to the laboratories. The media are distributed in a ring in the corridor.
2005 - 2011
First Minergie-Eco laboratory building in Switzerland
Cantonal Building Authority St. Gallen
1st prize competition and award of contract Further work
Planning and construction of new building
Linda Gmür, Minh Thai, Kasia Schikarski, Florian Pitschetsrieder
Art on the building: