Environmental impact assessment (EIA) for the Bredella site in Pratteln

A new city district with housing for around 2,200 residents and workspace for around 1,300 employees is taking shape next to the railway station in the Swiss municipality of Pratteln. As part of the district’s general planning, EBP was commissioned to carry out the statutory environmental impact assessment (EIA).

The «Bredella» project encompasses the development of a new city district with a variety of uses and building types. The task of completing the EIA for the site proved to be especially challenging on account of the following complex circumstances:

  • The nearby railway is used to transport more hazardous goods by volume than any other in Switzerland. We responded by working out risk-minimizing measures and securing their inclusion in the district development plan. The relevant cantonal and federal authorities subsequently assessed the risks as acceptable.
  • Measures needed to be introduced to limit the traffic volume associated with the site so as to ensure compliance with the established maximum exposure levels for air and noise pollution.
  • An independent inspection agency assessed the level of noise pollution stemming from the railway and traffic on the surrounding roads as high. This was addressed conceptually by enabling structural elements such as arcades and loggias and ensuring that all prerequisites would be met for the use of noise-optimized ground plans.
  • In order to minimize heat-island effects, we worked together with the landscape planners to develop various heat minimization measures. These included greenways, green roofs, and large-crowned trees.
  • Contact-line systems and one power line in the immediate vicinity of the site introduced questions concerning the protection of sensitive human habitation areas. We clarified the technical and legal issues involved and consulted with the relevant agencies. The district development plan was then assessed as feasible in light of what was determined to be acceptable levels of NIR (Non Ionizing Radiation) exposure.

Image description: Visualization of the future Bredella site
Picture Credits: Bredella AG

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