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Laboratory for Integrative Architecture 

Design studio, Bachelor thesis, Summer 2014


The design and research studio LIV - Living Island and Living Bridge - is embedded in the urban development project 3land, located in Greater Basel, at the frontier of Switzerland, France and Germany. The grown together agglomeration of the according towns of Basel, Huningue and Weil am Rhein is divided by its complex frontier situation, but as well by the river Rhein forming a natural border. Bridges and traditional boat connections link the two shores in regular distances along the Rhein, except in the area of 3land.

Amongst other reasons this situation results from the closed up and non-public usage of the shores, where the harbour and industries next to infrastructural usage like highways, both abandoned and used railway tracks, toll and frontier infrastructures are located. Under the pressure of the expanding city and the growing together of Europe parts of these formerly peripherical programs can be reduced or placed in adjacent areas, making 3land available for a more mixed urban fabric.

In the design studio we mainly want to work on the connection of the three areas crossing the river, enabeling the region to literally grow together. The development of a linking bridge is central to the task of the studio, not only as an infrastructural element for pedestrians and cyclists, but as a public space, creating a platform for different events.

We are less interested in how the bridge would work constructively, but more in how it would connect the different parts of the city and therefor in its anchor points: What will spacially and programmatically happen in and through the connection of the bridge with the city of Huningue on the French side of the river, and its rather precarious condition. How will the foot of the bridge connect vertically to the newly to be created island on the former harbor area of Basel and how will the island be developed consequently. How will the bridge touch Basel and what will happen below the bridge on these entrances?