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The Circle-Airport Zürich

The crescent-shaped building nestles against the slope of the lookout hill at Zurich Airport like a city at the foot of a mountain. Toward the airport, the building with its overhanging façade shows its urban side. Toward the park, the building breaks up into smaller cubic volumes, is more open and permeable, and communicates with the adjoining park.

The task and aim of the design of the surroundings is to interweave the landscape and the building with one another in both design and function and to position them in a stimulating spatial dialogue. The landscape of the Zurich Unterland with its indigenous forest ecosystems, open meadow areas, small clearings, and varied topography—which was defined in the design by Gustav Ammann as a landscape motif for the design of the surroundings of the airport—will be continued up to the façade of the building.

Conversely, the surfacing material slides like a carpet from the inside of the building into the park, to continue there as a spacious park terrace that extends along the entire length of the building.

Three squares with different garden themes form the most important anchor points between the building and landscape. The interior of the building is interwoven with the landscape by means of functional, visual, and landscape references. Existing and new paths lead gently up the slope up to the highest point on the hill, where visitors are astonished by a magnificent panorama view over the airport and as far as the Alps.

Client

Flughafen Zürich AG

Architecture

Riken Yamamoto, Tokio