Good things are worth waiting for. That certainly applies to the complete refurbishment of our headquarters in the center of Zurich. The renovation project took three years.
"The reopening of our headquarters on 3 December 2018 was a very special day – not just for everyone involved in this complex building project but also for those of us who are going to have the pleasure of working in the building again," says the branch manager at Bahnhofstrasse 45, Fritz Kunz, looking happily around the venerable main hall, together with Alexa Oggier, who has been in charge of the team of cashiers for over 20 years. This monumental space with its listed façade has now been restored to its 1917 glory. It's far more than just a piece of UBS history – the impressive building symbolizes the legacy and tradition of Swiss banking and now embodies not just solidity but also openness and transparency.
Open for all …
Despite the tight restrictions on creative freedom, the architects succeeded in opening up the building, making it lighter and more accessible. The symbiosis of old and new, functionality and grandeur, reflects the continuity and innovative spirit that characterize our firm. The upper stories in particular have a very progressive feel. They have been completely rebuilt with functionality in mind. So our headquarters are now ready for the future in every way. Alexa Oggier points out that the bank's business operations continued unrestricted throughout the entire refurbishment. Fritz Kunz highlights some other advantages of the new building, "Now all the business areas and all the services of our universal bank are represented here at headquarters, which makes it much easier for the 650 staff here to work together." The group management team also benefits from shorter distances, as all their vital decisions with a global impact can be made here, under the same roof.
… and an award-winning example of sustainable building
Clients entering the main lobby will now be welcomed with a giant installation by Swiss artist John Armleder. It represents our long-standing involvement in the art world, and the UBS art collection as a whole. We are committed to displaying more art in the refurbished building.
We not only engage in art and culture, but also have an ambitious strategy for supporting activities in fields such as the environment, education and other areas of society. In line with our high sustainability standards, during the refurbishment of the headquarters building great care was taken to use all resources respectfully. Environmentally-friendly building materials were selected that were low in pollutants. Thanks to better insulation and building technology, energy consumption has been reduced by about 30 percent "That's why our headquarters building has been awarded the internationally renowned Platinum LEED certification for sustainability," adds Fritz Kunz excitedly.