Swiss National Museum
Zurich, Switzerland

In order to reduce the isolation of the Platzspitzpark and create a safer atmosphere, a variety of new activities were planned for this island-like site in the heart of Zurich where the Swiss National Museum is located. Improvements will include a new café, relocation of the boat pier and revitalization of the music pavilion. Open spaces will be created and new focal  points defined for existing sightlines according to the history of the park. The park borders two rivers, the Sihl and the Limmat. On the banks of the latter, the new extension of the Museum as proposed by Erick van Egeraat will stand free from the existing main building, though connected to it under ground. The position and configuration of the ensemble of original and new elements creates a sequence of open and closed exterior spaces that guides the visitors’ movements and strengthens sightlines. While the existing interior courtyard remains part of the park, it will be given  a glass roof construction which can be closed if necessary to incorporate it into the museum for special occasions, events and festivities. In addition to public functions and offices, the new extension contains open spaces for special and temporary exhibitions which are connected both vertically and horizontally, creating a route through the museum without dead ends. The original main building will house the archaeology, middle ages and modern era collections.

17,750 m2
Assigned by
Zurich National Museum
Competition in 2002