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Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.

The Physic Garden at Novartis Campus in Basel, Switzerland by Sweco architects

 
December 22nd, 2015 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: Sweco architects

The Physic Garden is a place to celebrate sensuous phenomena of all kinds. It is a place where mystic scents, changing colors, and seasonal variety can be enjoyed and studied. It is also a test bed for pharmacological research.

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

  • Architects: Sweco architects
  • Project: The Physic Garden at Novartis Campus
  • Location: Basel, Switzerland
  • Landscape architect: Thorbjörn Andersson with Sweco architects
  • Team: Pege Hillinge, Johan Krikström, Johnny Lindeberg, Emma Norrman (plants), Therese Egnor (plants), Alexander Cederroth (light),  Markus Moström (graphics), Pål Svensson (drinking fountains).
  • Client: Novartis Pharma
  • Consultants: Schönholzer + Staufer GmbH/ Beat Rösch, Basler + Partner (structural engineering).
  • Area: 2800 sqm
  • Opening: 2012
  • Software used: AutoCAD, sketch up, Illustrator and PhotoShop

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

This Physic Garden at Novartis Campus is based on the monastery garden where, in ancient times, monks developed their knowledge about the pharmaceutical properties in plants, a knowledge that provided the foundation for today´s research efforts. These were often hidden places, laboratories in the outdoors, secluded from public life, containing secrets of utmost importance.

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Consequently, the Physic Garden at Novartis is hidden, spatially organized as a theatre, or as a labyrinth, or as an onion with many layers. The garden is semi-enclosed, and the visitor enters through a zig-zag movement between backdrops of tall hedges of yew (Taxus) and beech (Fagus). The garden reveals itself step by step. The one who searches will find; a statement which is as relevant to the researcher of today as it was to the medieval monk.

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Having arrived at the center, a sunken planting bed opens up, containing 31 species of pharmaceutical plants organized in a striped pattern.The slightly sunkenness of the basin adds to the preciousness of the plants, and placed inside the frame of a low granite wall, these fragile specimens become untouchable. They are viewed from slightly above, and we can read the flower bed as a colorful and textured painting or a striped carpet. Bridges of light construction, without railings, span the sunken bed, permitting the daring visitor a closer examination of the plants, each of which is labeled with an engraved bronze plaque mounted at the edge of the bed.

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Along the sides of the sunken bed are four “log racks”, a collection of logs stacked in piles whose forms complement the screens of hedges, and are also reminiscent of a library. The types of wood selected represent tree species from which substances have been extracted and used in ethnopharmacology. All in all, 70 plant species are on display in the Physic Garden.

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

Image Courtesy © Sweco architects

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Categories: Autocad, Campus, Garden, Illustrator, Photoshop, SketchUp

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