Merck Serono

Architects
JAHN, Chicago/USA

Planning time
2002 — 2004

Construction time
2004 — 2006

Services by Werner Sobek
Structural engineering
Facade engineering

Client
Serono International S.A., Geneva/Switzerland

Awards
Distinguished Building Award — Citation of Merit
Swiss Steel Construction Award

Photographer
Rainer Viertlböck, Gauting/Germany

The new headquarters of the Swiss pharmaceutical company Merck Serono in Geneva was built on the design of Chicago-based architect Helmut Jahn. The first building phase consists of the buildings B1 and B2 (7 storeys each) and B3 (6 storeys), an atrium between B1 and B2, and a forum between B2 and B3. All buildings have a massive basement which is founded on pillars. The facades of B1-B3, the atrium and the forum are completely glazed. The roofs of the atrium and the forum are equally fully glazed. A special feature is the roof of the forum: this 60 m long structure can be opened hydraulically. In order to minimize forces resulting from this movement, the roof is equipped with a counter weight.