More Space for Living Thanks to Timber Extensions



Renovate instead of demolish: Two residential buildings in the city of Zurich were extended by additional timber floors and now have more living space. At the same time, energy consumption fell significantly due to clever renovations. Timbatec was involved in both projects as a specialist planner.

First, the Swiss trade magazine for timber construction, describes in detail projects of urban compaction in the current issue. Two residential buildings, 35 and almost 50 years old, were renovated in an exemplary manner and extended by one or two timber floors. This means that more people will find a home in both buildings than before.   

Energy guzzler becomes a model building 

The older of the two buildings is in Zurich-Schwamendingen. It was built in 1970 with four stories and contains over 40 inexpensive apartments with one or two rooms. The house was regarded as an energy guzzler, partly because of its minimal thermal insulation. 

More living space, less energy consumptionSince this year it is different. 

The apartment house has been completely renovated. This is the first renovation of a larger apartment building in Switzerland to the Minergie-A standard. In addition, a timber attic floor with two 2.5- and 3.5-room apartments was added to the existing building. The living space grew by 22 percent, while at the same time energy requirements were reduced by two thirds, from 300,000 to just 100,000 kilowatt hours per year.

No alternative to timber construction

More living space was also created in an apartment building in Zurich District 6. 1982 the four-story building with 20 apartments and two offices was extended by two timber floors with eight apartments as part of a comprehensive renovation. For the responsible architect Andreas Büsser, there is no alternative to timber construction when it comes to adding one, two or three stories to the existing building. In addition to the time factor, it also makes more sense from an energy point of view to build in timber: "A wall construction made of timber is much slimmer than in solid construction", Büsser told First magazine.

Excess Energy

The two projects have one more thing in common: thanks to photovoltaic systems on the roofs and solar collectors on the facades, more energy is produced than the households in the residential buildings need.

Read more about the projects in Zürich-Schwammendingen and Kreis 6.



Thun Branch

Timbatec Timber Construction Engineers Switzerland Ltd.

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Tel: +41 58 255 15 10

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Timbatec Timber Construction Engineers Switzerland Ltd.

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Tel: +41 58 255 15 20

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Timbatec Timber Construction Engineers Switzerland Ltd.

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Tel: +41 58 255 15 30


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