Living on the slope

Logements Tiechestrasse, Zurich, Buchner Bründler  Architekten © Michael Blaser

Logements Tiechestrasse, Zurich, Buchner Bründler Architekten © Michael Blaser

Nicolas Bassand, associate professor at the Haute école de paysage, d’’ingénierie et d’architecture de Genève (HEPIA), was the guest of Prof. Emmanuel Rey’s studio at the Laboratory of Architecture and Sustainable Technologies (LAST) to talk about different forms of housing on sloping sites. Entitled “Habiter la pente : Quelques formes urbaines du logement collectif”, his lecture allowed students to discover several contemporary projects confronting the specific issues of urban sites marked by important differences in level.

After studying architecture, Nicolas Bassand obtained a PhD from the Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne in 2009 on the theme of density and collective housing, exploring architectural and urban innovations in contemporary Switzerland. He is now a lecturer at the Haute école de paysage, d’ingénierie et d’architecture de Genève (HEPIA).

Highlighting certain specificities inherent in the development of housing on urban sites in close relationship with open landscapes shaped by rails or a river, the conference brought out various specific issues that any collective housing project faces today: impact on the landscape, integration into the urban fabric, connection to the land, diversity of needs in terms of housing and collective space, functional mix, and sustainability issues.

Resonating with the issues addressed in the studio RELIEFS URBAINS, the conference allowed to put into perspective the didactic approach, from the urban project to the construction detail as a relevant process for the transformation of urban territories in transition.