Sihl City Green Wall
Jakob Green Wall Brings Life to Zurich Shopping Complex
Jakob has supplied a range of products to the landmark Sihl City Shopping Centre in Zurich. Opened in spring 2007, the 100,000 m2 centre is one of Switzerland’s largest and most advanced shopping and leisure complexes. Designed by architect Theo Hotz, Sihl City offers a broad range of shops, restaurants and entertainment venues, which attract around 20,000 visitors a day. Jakob was involved in several elements of the project, including the design and installation of a Green Wall for the eastern façade of the 850-car park, as well as the covering of a large part of the southern façade of the same building with stainless steel Webnet.
At a height of 23 meters and a width of 25.5 meters, the Green Wall of the Sihl City car park is a striking feature of the development. For this project, Jakob managed the complete design and installation programme, working closely with landscape architects Raderschall to design the plant training system – a complex process given the sheer scale of the project.
The Green Wall is suspended some 70 cm in front of the façade in order to provide sufficient growing space for the plants (in this case a combination of Chinese wisteria and birthworts was selected). The relatively wide-meshed system is formed by a combination of vertical and horizontal stainless steel ropes which are connected to the supporting structure of the building by purpose-designed steel spacers, ensuring permanent anchorage of the ropes. The spacers are mounted to the slabs of the second, fourth, sixth, and eighth floors, their distribution following a clear-cut grid pattern in keeping with overall building design concept.
The result is a striking living wall which delivers an elegant aesthetic solution to the car park façade, as well as a number of performance advantages: providing a sunscreen in the summer to help keep the car park cool; an additional layer of insulation during the winter; a level of sound insulation for the busy car park and an effective deterrent to graffiti.