Design: SKREINSTUDIOS x Foster+Partners
Client: Bank for International Settlements
User: Bank for International Settlements
A sustainable workplace for the future
The BIS headquarters in Basel, Switzerland are located in a vibrant and bustling area of the city. Surrounded by a mix of residential, commercial, and cultural buildings, the proposal site presents a unique opportunity for our design team to contribute to the vision of the transforming neighborhood. The façade takes inspiration for its materiality from the sandstone of the adjacent international SBB railway station and elements of the existing BIS Tower, thus striking a balance between the two dominant neighborhood buildings.
Creating a campus that is an inspiring work environment, as well as a welcoming meeting place for central bankers, is at the heart of the concept. The brief motivates us, not only to expand, but transform the existing building, creating a socially and environmentally responsive environment for the BIS community. The main protagonist to achieve this goal is the landscaped courtyard, which offers a calm oasis for the employees and visitors alike. It contributes to the wellbeing of the employees by offering a space for outdoor activities such as informal encounters and walking meetings.
In phase one, we are proposing a new city-scaled podium building that starts and finishes at the lower floors of the existing tower embracing a green court. This outdoor space helps to organize the circulation around, connecting the new and existing parts of the campus and fostering a creative and innovative social and work environment. While in the second phase, we propose to build an elegant and svelte new tower, directly on top of the podium, creating a dialogue with the existing one from the opposite corner of the site. With the idea to keep the impact of construction works in the podium to the absolute minimum, so business continuity is granted on all podium floors.