Swiss architect L3P Architekten has converted a castle-tower to the Vertical Museum. The castle-tower is under historical monuments’ protection and is a distinctive landmark in the region of Zurich. The tower is 21 metres high, the walls being up to 3 metres thick, and the interior radius averaging about 3.5 m.
As old as the hills and rusty fresh: rusty steel is used for all fixtures; the archaic expression of the castle-tower is underlined.
All existing technical installations have been removed, integrated in the walls or disguised in the timber work hung with rusty wire meshing. This pacification of room lends a marked accent on the stonework of the walls and the mounted objects exhibited on them. The medieval atmosphere has been reinforced with indirect and diffuse lighting.
The exhibition wages through local history vertically. As one ascends the levels, the exhibition themes become younger in their historical development: from mediaeval times on the ground floor, to the 20th century on the 5th floor.
As the battlement is ascended, one is ultimately confronted with the modern era. The weather-proofed exit is in reference to the interior free space of the upper castle. The materialisation with fibre glass, as well as the volumetry reminds one of a snail shell discovered petrified in the battlement cover. Information signs on the flat roof illuminate the modern era view.
The outdoor lighting of the tower has been renewed with a contemporary projection technique, which completely reduces light pollution and brings a 12-fold reduction of energy use.
+ Project credits / data
Architect: L3P Architects
Location: Regensberg, Canton Zurich, Switzerland
Gross floor area: 47.4m2, 6 floors
Client: Foundation Castle Regensberg
Light planning: Vogt + Partner, Winterthur
Exhibition: René Kindlimann, Aathal
Historian: Dr. Bruno Meier, Baden + Dr.Dominik Sauerländer, Aarau
Cantonal historic monument preservation: Beat Stahel
Photography: Vito Stallone