icrc's visitor center
geneva, switzerland
type of commission
competition, winning project
international committee of the red cross (icrc) musée international de la croix rouge et du croissant rouge (micr)
12m usd
offices, conference rooms and restaurant
project team
adrien besson, christophe pidoux, blaise fontaine, julien potignat, christiane reuther, isabel noronha, delfina degliantoni, nikolaj callisen friis
project date
competition 2009 , completion 2013
walter mair

The Carlton Building and the Red Cross Museum embody key symbols not just for the ICRC but for the international city of Geneva. By taking into account the presence of these two buildings, group8asia seeks not only to maintain these emblems but to strengthen them with a new intervention. The new programs of the restaurant and the conference centre are treated in such a way that the architectural intervention takes places as discreetly as possible.

Situated at the crossroads of the pedestrian flows on site, the new restaurant is situated in a flat volume, outlined by a soft and wavy shape offering no visual confrontation with the Carlton Building. The volume maintains the visual window from a point of view situated on the Avenue de la Paix. The building stays very transparent and retains open views of the site of the ICRC as well as over the city.

Hidden behind glass blades inserted into the hill, the conference rooms and offices allow for the occupation of a ground with harsh value whilst offering a strategic arrangement of the programs, limiting the impact of the new constructions.

The landscape is a focal point of this project and harmonizes with buildings of different styles and eras within the ICRC site. A “white plaza”, made of asphalt with white aggregates and sculptural benches, reorganizes the entrances of the main ICRC office building and its peripheral programs. It lends fluidity to pedestrian paths and reconnects the programs with a uniform treatment.