Conversion and Refurbishment of an Apartment Building in Kleinbasel, Switzerland

In April 2020, VOSS Architects were commissioned to develop the concept and detail design for the conversion and refurbishment of a three-storey apartment building with basement in Klein-Basel. We were able to oversee the project with and up to planning permission and detailed design of the interior features and installations.

The building dates back to the 19th century. It was for a long time in the hands of a single owner and had not undergone any significant alterations in the last decades. When clearing out the building and apartments, we were able to discover many of the original materials and fixtures in relatively good condition. For the concept design it therefore was important for us to retain as much as possible of the old and historic building fabric, preserve and enhance the character of the building and harmoniously complement and modernise it with restrained new interventions.

The kitchens in all three apartments were removed and replaced with new large kitchen units and built-in furniture. Some of the doors in the apartments were repositioned to allow for a more contemporary use and positioning of wardrobes. The floor plans of the bathrooms on the upper floors were rearranged and adapted to the current demands of time. On the ground floor, we were able to move the bathroom into the apartment in favour of access for all residents to the shared courtyard. On the attic floor level we removed the partition walls between the existing kitchen and the living room to create a large open space with light on both sides. At the same time, we opened up the ceiling to the attic and roof trusses. In the centre of this new double-height space we positioned the spiral staircase to the roof terrace.

The old stucco ceilings, window reveals and wooden floors could be retained in all three apartments. The old hexagonal tiles to the kitchens and bathrooms were replaced in the same style.

The windows to the facades were renewed and energetically upgraded. The colour concept for the renovation of the facades is based on the typical 19th century colours of Basel and enabled us to reintegrate the building into the street context and cityscape.


© VOSS Architects 2021