Thursday, September 17, 2009


Lussi + Halter Architekten - SBB staff restaurant Tannwald, Olten, Switzerland

Today we present a restaurant, showing how Lussi + Halter works in many different programs, every time with new solutions for new problems, as this one, a little building between railway yards.

"Raw shell, elegant interior
An element of raw strength determines the way in which railway yards are structured. Tough working conditions, large-scale buildings and equipment, strict rules and regulations, and constant movement create a world with its own laws. For the railway junction in Olten, this means that in addition to sheds, gravel, and railway tracks, there are also workshops, warehouses, and the required number of workplaces. Thomas Lussi and Remo Halter have cleverly integrated the new staff canteen into the busy site in the form of an autonomous
volume. They played with the fascination of the clear, simple, existing railway buildings, and the indeterminable charm of the area and created a building with irregular volumetry, interspersed with a small number of different windows. The volume, which strikes an accord with the architecture of the sheds nearby, due to its gabled roof façades, has been hollowed out to make way for a conglomerate of different rooms. A high-ceilinged guest room, containing differently-sized spaces, provides a surprisingly diverse room quality together with the central kitchen and the service rooms. The windows provide selected views from the loosely arranged interior across the raw depot surroundings and the hills surrounding
Olten. The subtle design of the plinth serves as an orientation for the building that would otherwise lack a clear direction, and gives it access to the tracks. The plinth causes the volume to be slightly raised, distinguishing it from the other buildings. The colourless building, its roof and façade cased in eternit slates, reveals its true self on the interior. Wood, red colour, and cosy lamps create a pleasant, elegant, yet at the same time hearty restaurant atmosphere that is a welcome contrast to the harsh environment of the tracks. The building is both unpretentious and intriguing. Its elaborate detailed concept and careful realisation more than fulfil the operational needs of the railway yard." text by Sibylle Bucher

/// click to SEE and DOWNLOAD the pdf / Lussi + Halter Architekten - SBB staff restaurant

Overall view from south

Overall view through the railway yard pointing east

Self service area on right and restaurant hall on left

North east façade

Aerial view of the canteen building in the railway yards pointing south west