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Andermatt Swiss Alps

House Gemse: Making two into three

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The duo becomes a trio.

The apartment house duo Steinadler & Hirsch will soon be a trio – because the third apartment building, House Gemse, is gradually taking concrete form right next door. Following the winter break, the construction works are now being taken up again. The long yellow boom of the crane is once again rotating overhead. During the first construction phase it is a central piece of equipment.

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Construction start in autumn 2013.

Floriano Cuoco from Andermatt Swiss Alps AG is managing the construction of Gemse: “In December we closed and protected the construction site against snow and freezing temperatures. The elevator shaft openings were sealed with wood and plastic covering.” Now, some four months later, the construction site is being reawakened from its winter hibernation. The workers are removing all the opening closures and pumping out the melt water.

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The elevator shaft already reaches skyward.

House Gemse will not be erected using conventional methods, as were the first two buildings. “Here we are building with wood elements,” explains Floriano. Giant prefabricated wood elements are stacked upon each other floor by floor. The wood construction company manufactures the transportable elements in its workshop in South Tyrol. Electrical wiring, insulation, and window openings are preinstalled in the exterior walls. The wood elements, some five to six metres long, are transported to Andermatt by truck – on schedule and prepped for installation – and then put in place on site. Thanks to this innovative wood construction technology, an apartment building can be constructed within a relatively short time. The remarkable progress can be viewed LIVE via the Andermatt Swiss Alps webcam.

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