FLAGSHIP Store Zurich
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Please mention the photo credits: Roland Tännler
The bonsai skyscraper
Our Flagship Store is located next to Zurich Hardbrücke, the very same place that back in 1993 inspired the Freitag brothers to start making bags from used truck tarps. It’s been there since 2006 and is a retail space that perfectly expresses FREITAG’s corporate philosophy.
Recycling and recontextualization: in other words, revitalizing used materials and ideas by giving them a second life and a new purpose are all part of the principles behind FREITAG. Sure, the FREITAG Flagship Store isn’t your usual glass and marble palace but consists of 19 old and rusty containers, each one as rough and recycled as the bags themselves. They were lovingly dismantled, massively reinforced, piled up on top of one another and bolted together to make a bonsai-type skyscraper. Low enough to remain below the official high-rise limits but high enough to give even the most hardened of visitors a distinct sensation of vertigo.
On four sales levels, the entire FREITAG range is on display, featuring more than 1800 recycled and unique individual bags together with countless accessories. The remaining five stories have a stairway to the observation and truck-spotting deck, which is 26 meters above ground and freely accessible during opening hours.
Back in 2006, the area was a wasteland in Zurich’s former 5th-district industrial quarter. With its Flagship Store, FREITAG made an urban development statement and assumed a dual pioneering role. Today, the bottom of the FREITAG tower is surrounded by the containers that make up Frau Gerolds Garten and, at the top, encircled by genuine skyscrapers with elevators and air-conditioning systems, such as the highest building in Zurich, the Prime Tower.
In the FREITAG tower, on the other hand, they have a mechanical, resource-saving ventilation system and a low-energy air heating pump. And from the top, there is still the best view of the rapid changes taking place in the city, private transport on the Hardbrücke and the countless railway tracks that slice through the heart of Zurich.
Architects: spillmann echsle architekten, Zurich
Realisation: Raumbau AG, Zurich
FREITAG Flagship Store Zurich, Geroldstrasse 17, CH-8005 Zurich