Arquitectura Viva
Sunday, July 12, 2020

Markus Schietsch, Elephant house in Zurich (Switzerland)

Designed to shelter the new Kaeng Krachan Elephant Park that is part of Zoo Zurich, this wooden structure is colossal. It is a dome of anisotropic geometry that mimics its environment, a forest recreated within the facility with the purpose of obtaining the temperature, humidity, and light conditions ideal for keeping elephants. The uniqueness of the structure, construction-wise, lies mostly in how its diameter of 80 meters is spanned without any auxiliary support. The dome is executed with 600 pieces of timber formed by three different layers, which were designed with the help of computational systems, fabricated with numerically controlled machines, and assembled on the site in successive phases. The initial step was to install an auxiliary scaffolding to support a series of warped, also auxiliary beams. The next step was to put up the first layer of pieces and screw them together. Finally, the two other layers were superposed, with a gap in between for 271 skylights made of ETFE cushions impermeable to ultraviolet radiation. The result is a structure of extraordinary size: an area of 6,800 square meters and a height of 15 meters, but with a thickness of barely 90 centimeters.
Woven Works

Woven Works

Luis Fernández-Galiano
AV Monografías 225 - AIRES MATEUS AV Monographs
analyzes in each issue a theme related to a city, a country, a tendency or an architect, with articles by leading specialists complemented by commentary on works and projects illustrated in detail. Published bilingually, with Spanish and English texts placed side by side.
Arquitectura Viva 225 - VIDA Y VIRUS Arquitectura Viva
covers current topics, taking stock of recent trends in set sections: cover story, works and projects, art and culture, books, technique and innovation. From 2013 on, monthly and bilingual, with Spanish and English texts printed side by side.
AV Proyectos 98 - FALA AV Proyectos
is the third member of the AV family: a bilingual publication essentially focussed on design projects (with special attention on competitions and construction details), heretofore only laterally dealt with in the other two magazines.
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