The 1st of May 2014, the revised Law on Territorial Planning (Loi fédérale sur l'aménagement du territoire, LAT) was brought into force by the Swiss Federal Council. Its clear focus on urban consolidation will strongly affect the way urban areas will develop in the future.
The new law will limit the extension of the already allowed building areas and will provide incentives in densifying the existing urban fabric.
One of the possibilities in engaging in such a process is to extend the existing buildings vertically, preserving the historical heritage and at the same time creating new flexible spaces. From an economical point of view, it is usually very difficult to justify the replacement of a building consisting of a demolition and a reconstruction. Rehabilitation, conversion and extension will therefore be the key words for the future of our cities.
This issue calls for a systematisation and rationalisation of the building system used for this kind of interventions. Limited working spaces, logistics constraints and the need to work in a highly densified area stress the need for a prefabricated building system which can be at the same time rational and adaptable to the site characteristics.
In order to fully exploit the possibilities of vertical extensions and the usually over dimensioned static systems of the existing buildings, this prefabricated building system must be light, easy to calculate and should have the possibility to evolve with time.