New replacement buildings for Riburg housing cooperative, Basel

The Riburg housing cooperative, established in 1945, is based in Basel's Hirzbrunnen district, where it is one of the largest property owners. In total, it owns 59 buildings with around 390 apartments. The housing complex with pioneer buildings from the 1950s is in need of renovation. Not only is the building fabric in need of renewal, but the apartment floor plans and sizes are no longer up to modern standards.

With the idea of a modular overall concept and a gradual renewal of the building stock, Burckhardt+Partner won the idea competition in 2016. Two new replacement buildings were realized in the core area of the housing estate, increasing the housing stock at Riburgstrasse 3-15 from 36 to 59 apartments.

Importance has been attached to retaining the typical character of the district, with housing rows and courtyards in between, while adeptly upgrading and condensing it. The mixture of apartments with 2.5 to 5.5 rooms appeals to different types of tenants. The focus is on family apartments and on living space suitable for the elderly. Compact floor plans with central living and dining rooms, along with flexibly utilizable individual rooms, form the basis.

In addition, the fixed elements – bathroom and supply closet – lend structure to the floor plan in the individual and communal areas. The apartments have no corridors – their basic open-plan principle enables optimal sunlight exposure by means of eastward and westward orientation. The bay windows and recessed balconies facing both the street and the courtyard make it possible to perceive these two outdoor spaces inside the apartments. While the first-floor apartments have private gardens along Riburgstrasse, communal green areas are provided in the courtyard: These meeting places make the outdoor space more attractive and help to vitalize the neighborhood.

The buildings are conceived as modules that can be combined variably and flexibly, thus taking into account the long realization period and the possibility that requirements might change during implementation.

Wohngenossenschaft Riburg, Basel

Periode of time
2017 – 2021

Architecture, general planning, execution

Roman Weyeneth