Europaallee, the new neighbourhood in the heart of Zurich, is located right next to Zurich main station and extends from the Sihlpost building to Langstrasse. Above all, the mix of ground-floor level uses, with a wide range of shopping, services, food and leisure, contributes to the liveliness of the area, while the proximity of areas for work, study, living and spending time also plays a role. While providing ideal transport links, Europaallee also offers an expansive inner-city area of public space which is a high-quality place to spend time, both now and in the future.
A project with broad support
In December 2004, the landowner SBB submitted a development plan for Europaallee (formerly Stadtraum HB). The most important development specifications for the construction project were:
- high social, economic and ecological quality;
- high architectural relevance, a clear identity and functionality;
- long-term upgrading of the area and interaction with the adjacent neighbourhoods of the city;
- development in stages.
On 18 January 2006, Zurich City Council approved the development plan unanimously. In the popular vote of 24 September 2006, the majority of Zurich voters approved the project.
The Europaallee project was completed in stages from 2009 to 2020.
Accents of urban development
The neighbourhood is characterised by various architectural styles. Each of the eight building plots was developed through study procedures and architectural competition in close cooperation with the City of Zurich, on the basis of Kees Christiaanse’s (Zurich/Rotterdam) urban development master plan.
- Plot A: Max Dudler, Zurich
- Plot B: Stücheli Architekten, Zurich
- Plot C: Max Dudler, Zurich; Annette Gigon/Mike Guyer, Zurich; David Chipperfield, London
- Plot D: Wiel Arets Architects, Zurich
- Plot E: Caruso St John Architects LLP, London; Bosshard Vaquer Architekten, Zurich
- Plot F: Boltshauser Architekten, Zurich
- Plot G: Graber Pulver Architekten, Zurich; Masswerk, Kriens/Lucerne
- Plot H: e2a eckert eckert architekten, Zurich
Greened with 76 ginkgo trees, Europaallee forms the central axis and, together with two new squares, provides an area of public space designed by the landscape architecture firm Krebs und Herde, Winterthur.
Europaplatz covers around 6,000 square metres. Like Europaallee and Gustav-Gull-Platz, the square opening onto the Sihl is paved with a band of large-form slabs made of Ticino gneiss. There are also seating facilities. Tall, individual lighting masts create a very specific ambiance at night. The sound installation ‘Harmonic Gate’ by the O+A artist duo, Bruce Odland and Sam Auinger is also integrated into Europaplatz. An installation by the artist Carsten Höller lights up the ceiling above the stairs between Europaallee and Zurich main station.
At approx. 5,200 square meters, Gustav-Gull-Platz is located in the middle of the area. The most eye-catching element of Gustav-Gull-Platz is the large water feature of about 400 square metres. This is a calm surface of water covering the ground to a maximum depth of 20cm. From Gustav-Gull-Platz, the Negrellisteg serves as a new pedestrian bridge leading over the station throat to Zollstrasse/Klingenstrasse and creating an attractive neighbourhood connection between districts 4 and 5.