Rowing regattas have been held on Rotsee near Lucerne since 1933. No wonder: It is extremely beautiful here and, with a length of 2.5 km, the lake is perfect for the international competition distance of 2,000 m. However, the infrastructure of the sports facility dated back to the early 1960s and was now so old that the Rotsee had no longer been considered as a venue for world championships since 2011.
In order to be able to construct the new building, the old one had to be demolished first; only a period of just under a year remained for the construction of the new building. The result is a 60 meter-long timber building that sits atop two offset fair-faced concrete cubes. The entire building complex thus resembles a chocked-up rowing boat and offers a decisive advantage at the same time: since the upper structure protrudes beyond the lower structure, a roof is created that protects spectators and rowers against the weather. The concrete blocks themselves primarily contain storerooms. In order to reach the upper floor the visitor ascends fair-faced concrete steps, from whose landing he has a good view of the sponsors‘ wall. The names of everyone who contributed financially to the construction of the sport center are immortalized here in fair-faced concrete.
When planning the construction the architects attached great importance to making it possible to use individual areas of the building entirely independently of the remaining areas, because the object is actually only used for regattas for one month in the year. So that the operation of the building nevertheless covers the costs, the rooms are rented out for the rest of the year to a language school and to the Swiss Rowing Association.
Individual reusable formliners
The lettering „Ruderzentrum Rowing Center“ is already visible on the façade from afar. This too was cast in the concrete with the help of NOEplast. The manufacture of this formliner went a little differently, however. Whereas many small letters had to be implemented with the sponsors‘ wall, only a few large letters had to be manufactured for the facade. For this reason the NOE employees manufactured individual letters and fastened them to a support plate, with whose help the actual formliner was then cast. Since the formliners can be used up to 100 times it wouldn‘t be a problem, for example, to manufacture a further wall.