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Station place-making at Zurich Hauptbahnhof

SBB AG Immobilien's Martin Riesen who is managing Zurich main station's south wing upgrade.

Future Cities Forum has been interviewing Martin Riesen who is directing important upgrades to the south wing of the main station in Zurich (Zurich Hauptbahnhof) which was originally opened in 1871 and now needs attention to the stone fabric as well as improvements in retail and customer amenities.

The works are essential to the impression that visitors gain when they arrive in the city and Martin intends to bring back the high quality and original structure of the historic building which features one of the great station halls of Europe,.

'The planning started in 2009 and was carried out in close cooperation with the Cantonal Preservation of Historic Monuments' Martin stated, 'with the first stage of redesigning and renovating the side to the platform hall.'

'The future mix of uses will be approximately 25% restaurants and 75% retail, a new health centre and meeting rooms. The old kitchen for the restaurants in currently in the basement of the south wing and no longer meets today's needs, so a new one will be built. By 2020, the shops and restaurants in the south section will be closed so that the historical substance and building technology can be renewed', Martin explained.

Zurich sees some 400,000 travellers through its station a week and Martin says the project will deliver a new and varied selection of facilities with appropriate look and value to the historic site.

Separate developments at Zurich HB Nord by the real estate division of SBB (Swiss Railways) are progressing to construct two new residential buildings with retail next to the train tracks.

Original Victorian architecture to be renovated for a new look Zurich HB station.above and below

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