The lateral moraine of the Linth glacier has formed a magnificent cultural landscape with the peaks of the Zimmerberg: its fusion of the soft lines of the foreground with the panorama of the craggy mountains, in the middle of which is the Glärnisch massif with the Vrenelisgärtli summit, created one of the most preferred topographical locations of Switzerland: an idyllic combination of a landscape, mountains, and a lake.
An idyll, Peter von Matt tells us, that is essentially timeless. Where it is blown open, however, it comes into a conflict with the time span defined by civilization and history. Such an unprecedented transformation of the world came about with the process and rapid progress of urbanization that has been taking place in recent decades; a process that robbed the Emilienheim of its view of a vast landscape and a ground-level view of the mountains.
Nonetheless, the local topography continues to shape the site: the steeply winding drive from Stockenstrasse ends with a sensational view of the City of Zürich. This is where the covered entrance is, with the upscale retirement flats in the Turmhaus (Tower House) to the right and the access to the nursing home on the left. The layout of the entire complex leaves the view of the existing nursing home to the east undisturbed and regains in the tower flats the fantastic panorama thought to be lost due to their elevated position and three-sided orientation.
The extension of the nursing home is placed along the Lättenhölzli woods and allows an operationally optimum combination of the above-ground floor areas. Falling short of the legally required distance from the woods, allows for a clearly laid-out and well-kept garden with lawns, flower beds, and a large terrace as a lively place to linger and meet on the ground floor. This garden, facing south, offers residents a possibility to move around independently in a protected outdoor space.
CLIENT: Stiftung Emilienheim
MEILI, PETER & PARTNER ARCHITEKTEN:
Markus Peter, Patrick Rinderknecht, Alice Hucker
Raphael Jans, Christoph Erni, Ansgar Kellner
LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE: Müller Illien Landschaftsarchitekten GmbH, Zürich
VISUALIZATION: Fabien Schwartz, Karin Gauch