Four detached buildings form a self-enclosed spatial arrangement across 6’700 m2 in the heterogeneous Hardturm quarter in Zurich-West. The area is close to a historic industrial zone that has been home to textile and machinery producers since 1805. Even today, massive factory buildings testify to this industrial heritage, alongside smaller developments such as the Bernoullihäuser.
The Kraftwerk1 development is aimed to ensure social diversity, offering apartments of varying sizes and making it possible to work and live in the same area. The complex consists of the main central building A, made from brown-violet clinker brick, and the reddish orangeplastered houses B1 (offices and commercial space), B2 (residential) and B3 (residential and work) arranged around it like a windmill. Two overlapping connection systems in the eightstorey house A make apartments of varying shapes and sizes possible. The two most prominent configurations are the two-storey ‘Le Corbusier apartment’, which extends upwards and downwards from the entrance from the inner connecting street, and the ‘Loos model’, which
allows a series of spaces with high-ceiling living rooms. The service provisions and commercial areas are just as generous as the apartments. Together, the development allows lifestyles that were considered unrealistic even recently: flexible space concepts on the one hand and the
combination of work and home in the same area or building on the other. In addition to the social and architectural highlights, the ecological aspects are also impressive. The development was awarded the Swiss Solar Prize in 2002.