Urban Picturesque

Communaux d'Ambilly masterplan

Thônex, Geneva


Urban Picturesque

This urban project, carried out as part of the development of the urban block A3 of the Communaux d’Ambilly, is a typo-morphological quest outlining parameters rather than with the
classical principles of composition. Completed in collaboration with the Kaisersrot office, then based at the ETHZ, the data was processed using a custom-designed computer algorithm including
specific parameters. Abandoning the grid in favour of a more “picturesque” system advocates not presenting an object as a thing in itself, but rather as a system of relationships with no unique points of view.

The buildings with differing heights minimise the loss of light between buildings and open spaces. The southern aspect of the main façades is favoured to apply an active façade principle and promote natural light in the dwellings. Public spaces such as the park, the courtyard, the forest and the empty space at the boundary are designed as special themes. This strategy aims to thwart the temptation of “form for form’s sake”. The image chosen is one that provides the maximum amount of sunlight in each room.

group8, Urban Picturesque, Thônex, Geneva, 2008

Commission type

Masterplan study