Zurich Circle - AirSpace: The Circle At Zürich AirPort

Zurich Circle - AirSpace: The Circle At Zürich AirPort

Asymptote Architecture


Thornton thomasetti
Zurich, Switzerland
Project Year

AirSpace: The Circle At Zürich AirPort

Asymptote Architecture as Architects

AirSpace is a bold and coherent architectural statement located directly across from the Zurich Airport terminals that accommodates a highly dynamic set of programs. Housed within is a mix of luxury commerce, state-of-the-art medical facilities, cultural venues and higher education facilities that serve a transient and global clientele. Asymptote's proposal integrates contemporary design with engineered precision to create an elegant yet robust new destination that is part of the Zurich Airport development as well as the city at large. Asymptote’s architectural solution proposes a three story plinth above the Zurich Circle roadway that adjoins the existing Airport. Located above this plinth are four distinctive towers separated by ‘external galleries’ yet inter-connected by a contiguous interior public space located on the third level. A key conceptual driver of the design is this ‘activated’ interior urban experience of the project that is linked by bridges to the terminal buildings on one side and with the surrounding landscape on the other.

This articulated interior public realm, situated between the plinth below and the towers above, functions as a spatial break between these two aspects of the architecture.It is an important public event space that connects the horizontal levels with the ambitious and open verticality of the atriums. The taught and elegant articulation of the towers is inspired by the powerful horizon surrounding the city of Zurich, with its snow-capped mountains and open sky. The curvature of the towers' glass facades and dichroic louvers play against the changing quality of the light and the panorama of white jagged peaks.Asymptote’s design for AirSpace is a contemporary architectural solution that anticipates the overlap of urban zones and airport infrastructure.These new urban environments are more than transportation hubs that merge global traffic and local conditions, they areopportunities to create new and significant spaces for the 21st century city.

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