LOCATION / HISTORY
Renowned companies such as Schindler or Henkel have long characterised Pratteln, a suburb of Basel in the canton of Basel-Land. When these companies later left the town or shut down completely, this town of 16,000 fell quiet for a long time.
The «Salina Raurica» special development plan has allowed Pratteln to evolve since 2009, once more becoming an attractive commercial and residential area. The new high-rises also show just how much the town is appreciated. The CERES Tower highlighted here is already the third high-rise building in Pratteln.
The CERES Tower’s success story began when investor and patron of the arts Hermann Alexander Beyeler bought a plot bordering onto the former heavy-industry site belonging to the Buss corporation. Together with HRS Real Estate AG, he initially developed plans for apartments and a high-rise block on the site. Hermann Beyeler later decided not to go through with this and found an investor for the tower in a Credit Suisse Asset Management (Switzerland) Ltd. property fund.
The CERES Tower is situated at the Hohenrainstrasse 24, northeast of Pratteln station. There is good infrastructure in the vicinity, with shopping centres, restaurants and the Aquabasilea water and wellness world. The optimal connection to the A2 (Basel / Gotthard) and A3 (Zurich) highways is a particular advantage. But the situation is also ideal without a car: the Pratteln railway station can be reached within ten minutes on foot and the S-Bahn train leaves every 15 minutes for Basel, a ten-minute ride away.
CONCEPT / ARCHITECTURE
The 23-storey 81.3 metres high commercial and residential tower derives its name from the Roman goddess Ceres, as painted by
Baroque artist Peter Paul Rubens. This painting forms part of the collection of Hermann Alexander Beyeler, the original owner of the plot on which the tower stands. Hermann Beyeler wanted to highlight the painting in the new tower. This idea was later rejected but the name stuck.
The CERES Tower’s footprint is 24.8 metres long and 9.9 metres wide. At 21 metres, the roof has eaves of 9.9 by 9.2 metres. The tower then continues to rise in a concave, expressionistic design – finally forming a projecting crown with a square rim resting on blades. The base, shaft and rooftop structure relate the architecture to classic examples such as the Rockefeller Center.
The metallic cladding of the supports and floor slabs features a dark bronze tone, recalling the tradition of the local casting industry. The façade bands are in two shades of grey, lighter and darker, with a green tint.
The CERES Tower has three basement storeys comprising 202 parking spaces and storage and technical areas. There are dividable commercial rental premises over the seven base storeys (levels 0 to 7). Above these, on storeys 8 to 22, there are 90 rental apartments with six units on each floor. Storey 23 contains the building technology.
The subsoil is very stable shingle. The building is based on conventional foundations with point foundations near the supports. A reinforced concrete skeleton structure is positioned on this. The core and floor slabs are made from 32 cm-thick cast-in-place concrete, whereas the inner and façade supports are prefabricated.
The façade has a concave shape and consists of a metal framed structure and fully glazed window elements. These are placed outside of the support pillars and are attached to the slab fronts.
Because of the high construction design, logistics on the construction site were a real challenge. Materials were transported using solely two hoists.
For the scaffolding construction, HRS Real Estate AG chose a rather unusual process for the high-rise constructions. Conventional scaffolding was used, adapted to the concave shape of the façade. In order to build the projecting roof crown, a protruding bracket had to be built around the building on the 19th storey to support the scaffolding.
ENERGY CONCEPT / SUSTAINABILITY
The high-rise block is connected to the Pratteln district heating network belonging to Elektra Baselland (EBL). Energy is obtained using local renewable sources, in particular waste heat from ARA Rhein and a wood-fired cogeneration plant. Apartments in the CERES Tower are equipped with controlled ventilation ; offices have heating and cooling ceilings. The extensive green planted rooftop makes a further contribution to sustainability.