The mountain commune of Bregaglia in southern Switzerland has won the 2015 Wakker architecture prize. The idyllic valley that connects canton Graubünden with Italy was praised for its mix of modern and traditional architecture.
The commune, which has just 1,600 residents, is the result of the merger in 2010 of the smaller districts of Bondo, Castasegna, Soglio, Stampa and Vicosoprano.
The merger led to a new common development strategy, which was praised by the Wakker jury. It said this new strategy had allowed the local population to be properly informed and consulted, allowing the preservation of cultural heritage objects and the promotion of high-quality contemporary architecture.
The Bregaglia valley, located not far from the Italian border, is best known as a paradise for hikers and mountaineers and a peaceful refuge for artists. It was home to the Giacometti family of artists, including Alberto Giacometti.
The Wakker Prize is awarded annually by the Swiss Heritage Society to a municipality for the development and preservation of its architectural heritage. Last year’s recipient was Aarau, the capital of canton Aargau. Canton Graubünden has now won the prize five times.
swissinfo.ch with agencies