Project WSJ-155: Taniguchi building at the Novartis Campus in Basel

EBP supports Novartis Pharma AG in the realisation of a new laboratory building.

The Tokyo-based Japanese architect Yoshio Taniguchi had the vision of realising a laboratory building as a suspended white cube. This very special architectural statement could only be implemented with an unconventional construction and extraordinary feats of engineering. The building was accordingly designed as a bridge structure so as to ensure that the ground floor could be freely experienced in the absence of support structures. The white glass cube houses laboratories with office workstations and auxiliary rooms. The transparent, monumental glass cube on the ground level and intermediate level above it house two large laboratories and a pharmacy. The underground levels house a retail shop and various auxiliary and storage rooms.

The main challenges in this complex building included the task of combining high-performance structural engineering with a robust installation load and the task of accommodating the various features of a broad utilisation profile. In addition to this, the building was also required to be flexible enough to permit its adaptation to the changing requirements of future occupants during the planning and construction stages. The meticulous planning of details and the close cooperation of the contractors at the construction site made it possible to realise the extraordinary degree of precision and quality reflected in the specifications of the distinguished architect, and this despite rigid scheduling and cost constraints.

EBP was commissioned to play the role of a comprehensive architectural design and engineering services provider for this laboratory building. The general architectural design team included Blaser Butscher Architekten (local architects), ZPF Ingenieure AG (structural engineering), Kiwi AG (HLKKE engineers), Kalt + Halbeisen AG (plumbing), mps (laboratory design), Emmer Pfenninger Partner AG (façade design), Reflexion AG (lighting design) and Kopitsis Bauphysik AG.