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ETH-Studio Jan De Vylder, Jan De Vylder, Oliver Burch, Jakob Junghanss, Lukas Ryffel (eds.)

Towards Transformation

The 33.3 % Attitude. Zurich

Book design: Piet Bodyn, Mathieu Lauwers

English, ca. 192 pages, ca. 310 images and plans,
26,5 × 19,5 cm, softcover with open spine and jacket

Euro [D] 39.–, Euro [A] 40.10

Pre-order. Release date: September 2024
ISBN 978-3-03863-085-2

CHF   39.00

• Strategies for alternative handling of existing building stock

• Case studies of single-family home neighborhoods, residential and office complexes as well as large-scale
structures such as parking garages

• Perfect for architects, urban planners, students, and city dwellers

The city of Zurich is growing – like many metropolitan areas. As both the population and employment rates increase, there is a desire for inward densification and thus it is becoming necessary to question how to use the available ground suitable for building more economically. In the last 20 years, Zurich has managed this primarily by replacing buildings. But what alternatives are there to continue building the city and to incorporate existing buildings to a greater extent?

Over a period of three years, the 33.3% design studio of the chair of De Vylder created 22 projects that use specific case studies from the city of Zurich to develop an alternative approach to urban transformation. The design studio participants closely examined urban development practices of different actors, from institutional investors and the public sector to cooperatives and private owners.

Based on the specific objectives of owners and developers, the students developed strategies for dealing with the existing building stock. Thus, this publication offers insight into a way of working that does not strive for a 100 % solution in the design, but rather seeks gradual, fragmentary approaches between new and old.

The 33.3% in the title refers to more than just a numbers game – it is an approach to design that revolves around the economy of resources and considers the existing building as a resource to be used – continuing with what is already there instead of complete demolition and replacement. The publication outlines strategies for dealing with single-family residential areas as well as settlement structures in agglomerations and large-scale buildings.

In five chapters, the possibilities of partial preservation are outlined using Zurich-related case studies. The potential of this method is visualized in a photo series of realized buildings, while plans, interviews and essays make the design approach accessible for further practical  implementation – both in Zurich and beyond.

About the editors

The 33.3% design studio of the ETH Zurich Chair of De Vylder combines the work of Architecten Jan De Vylder Inge Vink with that of – Jakob Junghanss, Lukas Ryffel, and Oliver Burch. Over three semesters, the studio worked with students to examine urban redevelopment in Zurich – a city that is constantly changing due to its urban planning strategy of replacement building. In the studio, plans for the replacement of buildings were super-imposed on the existing situations in order to develop proposals that productively weave a third of the qualities of the existing building stock into proposed new structures. The collective goal of the studio was to develop a critical and productive attitude that takes wishes for the future just as seriously as what exists on site to facilitate pinpoint architectural interventions.

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