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Roche tower 2 Switzerland’s tallest building gets green light

The new Roche Building 2 will be 27 metres higher than its neighbour and current Swiss record holder Building 1

(© F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd. Photo: Beat Ernst)

Basel-based pharma giant Roche has received approval from the local parliament to construct a 205-metre office block called Building 2. When it is completed in 2021 it will surpass Roche’s own 178-metre Building 1, which is currently Switzerland’s tallest building. 

The project was accepted by Basel City’s cantonal parliament on Wednesday, winning 84 votes. Two people voted against and there were five abstentions. 

Building 2 was designed by Swiss architecture firm Herzog & de Meuron and will house offices for around 1,700 employees. The 50-storey building will cost CHF550 million (CHF572.3 million) to build and is expected to be ready by 2021. 

It is part of a CHF3 billion investment in infrastructure at Roche’s Basel headquarters over the next decade. A 132-metre research centre is also in the pipeline. 

Roche’s Building 1 was inaugurated in September 2015 and claimed the title of Switzerland’s tallest building from the Prime Tower in Zurich, which had held the record for almost four years. 

Tight planning regulation restrictions in many Swiss urban areas mean that there are few skyscrapers in Switzerland. 

The world's tallest artificial structure is currently the 828-metre Burj Khalifa in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. Of the 100 tallest buildings on the Skyscraper Center databaseexternal link - compiled by the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat - the shortest is the 300-metre Doosan Haeundae We've the Zenith Tower A, in South Korea.

swissinfo.ch and agencies

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