Major project in Switzerland: Zürcher Kantonalbank takes on a new look

1 / 2

The bank offers free temporary workplaces in the Züri office

The spacious service counter area is the core of new-look building

Following four years of remodeling, the new-look head office of Switzerland’s largest Kantonalbank opened in mid August. Drees & Sommer supported the €185 million project right through to commissioning.

Over a period of four years, around 45,000 square meters of floor space of the Zürcher Kantonalbank’s head office were remodeled and renovated. The full complement of roughly 400 staff moved back into the building in August. Drees & Sommer has supported the project over the last two years as construction manager. Tasks included coordinating building services equipment and ensuring on-schedule commissioning. This was achieved despite the challenging completion deadline and difficult conditions: cramped inner-city location, heritage-protected buildings, contamination, and operations continuing in parts of the building during remodeling.

It was time for a complete overhaul. The new building concept was the Zürcher Kantonalbank’s response to changing customer needs and bank processes. The bank’s services were to become more interactive, a ‘third place’ with Internet access, several restaurants, a cafeteria, and a counter area opened up on four sides. One of the highlights is the ‘Züri Office’, a room with 20 free workplaces that can be booked by the hour. Guests bring their own devices; the bank provides coffee and wifi. It is not only the design concept of the Zürcher Kantonalbank that has new look. The bank also invested generously in sustainability: The heritage-protected facade dating back to the 1960s was renovated with energy-saving glazing, local materials were used for the fitout, the skylight ceiling was raised, and the heritage-protected spiral staircase preserved. The whole exercise has paid off – today, the building proudly displays its MINERGIE certificate.