BIG transitlager in basel, switzerland by bjarke ingels group
BIG transitlager in basel, switzerland by bjarke ingels group BIG transitlager in basel, switzerland by bjarke ingels group
oct 25, 2011

BIG transitlager in basel, switzerland by bjarke ingels group

copenhagen-based practice BIG have created ‘transitlager’, the winning competition proposal to renovate and extend a warehouse in the industrial district of basel, switzerland. dating from the 1960s, the 18,000 square meter concrete structure will receive an additional 7,000 square meters for residences and arts-related spaces to transform the upcoming dreispitz neighborhood into a bustling arts district. visually separated into two stacked volumes, the combination will become a hybrid of mixed-use program, rearranging the distribution within the existing floors to merge activity from the art, commerce, work and living spaces.

all images © bjarke ingels group



encompassed by a network of intersecting railways, loading docks and turning radii, the zigzagged facade and pointed corners become generated by the infrastructure. connections between existing public areas and nearby botanical garden enforce the dynamic location of this new center. additional vibrant urban spaces and peaceful gardens provide diverse atmospheres for various lifestyles and activities. the folded perimeter of the upper structure optimizes interior daylight conditions and outward views from rooftop terraces placed within generated niches. the exterior reflects the geometries of the surrounding context, creating a fresh appearance with a familiar character.

public green spaces



original walls have been removed to create flexible open plans while limited interventions and partitions feature a minimal material palette of concrete surfaces to retain the sense of place and classic luxury. sparsely filled internal arrangement increases feasibility for installations for businesses, ateliers and workshops.

zigzagged volume is set upon the existing warehouse



the stacking of two complimentary structures – one on top of the other – has generated a new take on the typology of the communal courtyard. where the typical residential courtyard finds itself incarcerated by walls of program, the roofyards of the transitlager combine the tranquility and communal space of the courtyard with the sunlight and panoramic views of the penthouse. a penthouse for the people.’ – bjarke ingels, partner and founder of BIG.

roof terraces and gardens overlooking the encompassing industrial district

artist studio

industrial character maintained within the residences

residences overlook the city at night

aerial view of model

zigzag motif is translated into the landscape

staggered facade creates a series of roof terraces


(left) initial stacked volumes (right) upper volume sliced into five smaller volumes

(left) volumes rotated (right) structural connections diagram

(left) volumes elongated (right) daylight diagram

(left) daylight diagram (right) rooftop green spaces

(left) facade study (right) green diagram



project info:


partner in charge: bjarke ingels, andreas klok pedersen project leader: jakob henke team: gul ertekin, ioannis gio, ricardo palma, alexandra gustaffson, bara srpkova, marcelina kolasinska, ryohei koike



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