Designed and constructed with the precision of a Swiss watch, this monumental hybrid timber campus charts an architectural roadmap toward the future
Completed in 2019, the Swatch and Omega Campus in Biel, Switzerland, is a magnificent example of technology, design, and environmental sustainability working in concert to create a space that promotes the health of users and the planet. This book illustrates every aspect of the project, including drawings, plans, and numerous interior and exterior photographs. Pritzker Prize-winning architect Shigeru Ban has experienced firsthand the trauma of natural disasters, which he has addressed in numerous emergency-relief projects. With the Swatch and Omega campus, Ban demonstrates how sustainable architecture can benefit industry as well, and why he promotes timber as the planet’s only truly renewable resource. Philip Jodidio introduces readers to the buildings’ ingenious and cutting-edge features—a serpentine, cocoon-like facade that echoes the playful elements of the Swatch brand; a gridshell roof structure consisting of thousands of precisely interlocking timber pieces; numerous “clean rooms” designed for optimal airflow and minimal airborne contaminants; modular work spaces and easy outdoor access to promote employees’ physical and mental well-being. A feat of forward-thinking architecture, this corporate headquarters represents a benchmark for future building projects around the world.