Home for the Elderly and Nursing Homes, Upper Frick Valley, Switzerland

The Project
The Association for the Care of the Aged in the Upper Frick Valley (VAOF) runs two nursing homes for the aged, in Frick and Laufenburg. The Frick establishment was expanded with the construction of apartments for the elderly.

Walker Architekten AG designed an exceptionally environmentally friendly and space-optimising building. Special attention was also given to integrating the new building with the existing residential area.

A total of 28 apartments was created. The living quarters are south-west facing, in accordance with the shape of the property. The north eastern side was planned as a spacious development area and an emergency exit area.
An important goal was to design the building so that natural light could permeate the apartments whilst at the same time offering a view of the landscaped park. This was achieved through a floor to ceiling glass façade.

In order to evaluate solar transmission into the building, an extensive climate simulation was carried out. The aim was to achieve reduced solar radiation during the day and cool temperatures at night. To fulfil these requirements, Pilkington Insulight Activ™ Sun 54/33 glass units (self-cleaning glass with a solar control coating) are fitted. In total 450 m² Pilkington Insulight Activ™ was used.

The entire glass construction has a Ug value of 1.0 W/m²K (excluding frames, air space filled with krypton gas).

The façade was constructed from wood and metal by 4B Fenster AG. Each of the 81 prefabricated elements consists of a large, solid glazed part and a small ventilation wing.

The glazing was installed after the assembly of the window frames on the building site.

Around half of these windows are motorised and can be controlled electronically (WindowMaster advanced). In this way, various requirements, such as night time cooling, could be fulfilled. Over the first summer, the combination of sun protection glass and natural night time cooling worked very well. Prior to the refining adjustments of the controls, the temperature in the passageway never exceeded 23°C, even on hot summer days.

Through the intelligent application of advanced glazing technology and market-proven controls, a pleasant room temperature was achieved for the residents without expensive and energy intensive air conditioning.
  Project ReferenceGL_PR0131
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Project Details
Surface Area
450 m²
Dörrmattweg 9, 5070 Frick, Switzerland
Opening Date
Building Type
  • Residential / Domestic
About the Architect/Installer
Walker Architekten AG, Christoph Rufle, Brugg, Switzerland
Window manufacturer: 4B Fenster AG, Hochdorf, Switzerland; IGU producer: Pilkington Glas Wikon AG, Wikon, Switzerland
Benefit Led Categories
  • Self Cleaning
  • Solar Control