Swiss bakery Merz Produktion Rossboden is a new shop in the mountain town of Chur which has become a beacon for fresh breads, pastries and environmental stewardship. The first bakery to achieve the MINERGIE green building rating, the shop, designed by architecture firm Clavuot, went much further than just exemplary energy efficiency. Topped with a vegetated hip roof that echoes the adjacent mountains and a generous portion of skylights, the busy restaurant is full of natural light for the baking staff.
Patrons are greeted with a bright, glass lined and airy restaurant with a curious roof that looks like a bit of the Alps was shaved off and placed on top. The vegetated roof adds a visual softness to the building and helps cool it down in the daytime as the ovens crank out goodies. The interior is also lined with windows so the baking process is fully viewable.
The bakery is a sizable operation which is open 365 days a year so naturally it uses a lot of energy, but the building’s clever design mitigates a good amount of what is used. The main oil fired ovens are placed in the middle of the building to make best use of any radiant heat in the winter. By incorporating state of the art equipment and recovering the waste heat of baking for other proposes like heating water the operation has significantly reduced its operating cost.
The translucent pyramid atop streams daylight into the baking area, reducing the need for artificial light and making for a more hospitable working environment. Sun tubes also dot the roof letting in plenty of light throughout the open space while reducing heat gain.