EM2N was developed Conversion Theatre 11 located in Zurich, Switzerland. When beginning to perform on the competition it soon became evident that a “gentle” conversion was not attainable inside the financial and technical framework. Only a strategy dealing in a radical way with the present constructing fabric could succeed. Demolishing the original Stadthof supplied the chance of realizing a customized creating.
A new spatial layer was placed around the laid open and enlarged stage and auditorium, which develops its height in a way that the highest point is reached at the corner of Thurgauer-/Wallisellenstrasse, thus proclaiming a confident urban attitude. This simple volumetric gesture mediates among the opposite Hallenstadion and the adjoining little-scale residential homes at Birnbaumstrasse.
The dynamics of the new creating is counteracted by the presence of the heavy stage tower. A skin of perforated steel and aluminium sheeting covers the constructing “all over”, hence underlining the equality of roof and walls. With the exception of the couple of precisely composed “eye windows” and the glazed entrance region, the aluminium sheeting covers dozens of little windows. The theatre obtains two faces like the neighbouring Hallenstadion: at daytime it appears mysteriously secretive, while at night a glittering and festive atmosphere is produced.
The inner organization reacts to the new urban gesture. The new entrance at the junction is visible from all directions. The restaurant was relocated from the unattractive place at Wallisellenstrasse to the much more prominent side of Thurgauerstrasse, gaining a direct visual relation to the Tram stop and the Hallenstadion.