The 6-story building appears uniformly tidy; the facade in a warm bronze tone nevertheless lively. Half of it will be used as an office wing for over a hundred employees and the other half as a residential building for 30 apartments. An elegant and effective separation of living and working. Burkard Meyer Architects describe the townhouse as a “simple, concise structure” and an “organizing element in a heterogeneous environment.”
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Insights into the making - conversation with Rene Ooms
Rene Ooms, process manager and order coordinator at BWB-Altenrhein AG. He has worked at BWB for over 10 years and has been involved in the construction of hundreds of properties in Switzerland and abroad. His job is to coordinate between architects, builders and project managers. It is responsible for ensuring that the facade shines the building at the right time and in the right shade. With this task, Rene Ooms is a sought-after contact: many seek his advice, his well thought-out solutions and his decisiveness.
If you were to move into the Kriens townhouse, on which floor would your apartment be?
Rene Ooms: The top floor is the corner apartment, where I have the most beautiful view of Kriens and the mountains. So after a demanding day at work, I could relax in the loggia and enjoy the view.
You accompanied this project on the part of BWB, do you like the end result?
Rene Ooms: It's beautiful - a real showpiece that everyone involved can be proud of. I will stop next time and have a look at the Kriens townhouse at my leisure. What is impressive for me is not only the finished building, but the entire project. We had tightly coordinated planning, easy communication, and super collaboration among the project managers.
As the contract coordinator for BWB-Altenrhein AG, do you see the planned building each time, do you know the end result in advance?
Rene Ooms: Yes, often. In this case, we had contact with the architects of Burkard Meyer at the beginning. We were allowed to see the first visualizations and sketches of the building early on in the collaboration.
Which color finish was chosen for the Kriens townhouse?
Rene Ooms: The E4 finish is not only decorative - grinding can, for example, eliminate small scratches - or even manufacturing marks - before anodizing. I recommend this mechanical pretreatment; depending on the quality of the factory parts. The final finish is even with a fine texture. The natural character of the aluminium is preserved.
How decisive are samples in the surface finishing of aluminium?
Rene Ooms: It is mandatory that an object order is sampled in advance in the original alloy. After the color tone has been selected, the strip width is created using limit sampling (target-minus-plus) and forms the reference for production.
How long did BWB-Altenrhein AG need to anodise the profiles and sheets of the townhouse?
Rene Ooms: The grinding and anodizing of the profiles began in October 2017 and, with consultation, was completed in various stages after 4 months. The sheets were finished somewhat later, with the last delivery leaving the Altenrhein plant at the end of 2018.
What are contact points? And why are they so important when ideally you never see them?
Rene Ooms: The workpiece remains untreated at the contact points. Profiles and sheets are mounted to a support frame during anodizing. The points where the support frame and sheets touch are called contact points. The contact points allow unhindered current flow - the prerequisite for a successful anodizing process. Accurate specifications and technical drawings of visible surfaces, grinding surfaces and contact points are very important for the successful implementation of a project. For all profiles and sheets of the townhouse, the contact points were planned and determined together: So there were no surprises.
An all-around noble facade: What effort does the city of Kriens now have to make sure it stays that way?
Rene Ooms: Almost none! Anodising aluminium creates a tough and corrosion-resistant protective coating. With regular care, the façade of the Kriens townhouse will shine in BWB bronze for decades. Anodised surfaces of BWB are colorfast and lightfast. Our cleaning recommendations help with proper maintenance for a long life.