Special Projects

Theatre tower on the Julier Pass

Bivio, Switzerland

Der Theaterturm auf dem winterlichen Julierpass 1 | Der Theaterturm auf dem winterlichen Julierpass
The temporary red theatre tower on the Julier Pass creates a unique Alpine contrast to the hermetically sealed theatre spaces of the city.
Design:  The tower on the Julier Pass reflects the structure of theatres of the past two millennia; it cites the Greek theatre, the Roman amphitheatre, Shakespeare's stage and Baroque theatre boxes. The extreme verticality of the stage space, its location in an archaic landscape and the natural play of light inside makes the tower a unique building in the European tradition of theatre building. Nature enters into a direct dialogue with the action on stage. The tower was opened in 2017; it is scheduled to be dismantled in 2020. The construction work was carried out in compliance with nature protection requirements, and passenger transport to the building is provided in the form of public transport.

Wood: The high wind forces on the pass required a rigid panel structure. In addition, one layer of the outer skin could be omitted. All building elements could be reused. The building has made a significant contribution to innovation support for local companies (timber construction, building technology, heating system, transport).

Energy: The tower is unheated but can be heated with gas heating during the theatre's operating hours. The use of renewable energy sources has also been tested in advance, but due to the high altitude only a low level of efficiency would be achieved.
Der Turm in der Berglandschaft 2 | Der Turm in der Berglandschaft
Innenraum mit Bühne 3 | Innenraum mit Bühne
Zuschauerraum 4 | Zuschauerraum
Fertigteiltransport 5 | Fertigteiltransport
Baustelle 6 | Baustelle
Basic information
Year of Completion |  2018
Investor |  Nova Fundaziun Origen, Riom (CH)
Architecture |  Giovanni Netzer, Nova Fundaziun Origen, Riom (CH)
Structural Engineering |  Walter Bieler AG, Ingenieurbüro, Bonaduz (CH)
Construction Time |  16 months (3 months for construction in the initial phase)
Number of floors |  5 + terrace
Plot size |  317 m²
Gross floor area |  1 475 m²
Awards |  Marketing and Architecture Award

Technical aspects
Concept |  Walls and roof: 120 mm cross-laminated timber panels
Woodworking |  Uffer AG, project manager Urs Hefti, Savognin (CH)
Origin of Timber, Certification |  local spruce (CH) construction timber, all materials meet PEFC/FSC standards
Forestry Value Chain |  Exclusively regional craft enterprises (with the exception of stage hydraulics
Energy Systems |  Gas heating with condensing technology outside the tower, fan-coil air heater, 1.4 km of underfloor heating on the ground floor
Energy Consumption  |  In approximately 210 days, 10 043 litres of propane gas and 71 194 kWhth were consumed.
U-Value Wall | Roof | Floor | Windows (W/(m²K)) |  1.0 (solid wood panels 12 cm construction wood without insulation + fixed glazing)

Regional Wood Circular Economy 100% Wood