Project info

  • Office
  • 2023

  • €150.000

  • Istituto Elvetico Salesiano

  • Lugano, CH

  • 200 sqm

  • 400 sqm

  • Heating Pumps - Roof Insulation

  • > 50 KWe/h sqm

  • Arch. C. Schwitter

  • Engineering - Procurement - Construction

Salesiani Office Facilities: Integrating Sustainability into Historic Architecture

In Switzerland, the Salesiani Office Facilities project presents a unique challenge: updating a historic mixed-use building to meet modern energy efficiency standards. This initiative demonstrates how sustainability can be seamlessly integrated into existing structures, preserving their heritage while enhancing their environmental performance.

Sustainable Renovation Strategies

The project employs a multifaceted approach to sustainability, focusing on energy system upgrades and building envelope improvements:

  • Heat Pump Installation: Replacing the old methane gas heating system with a modern heat pump significantly reduces the building’s carbon footprint. This technology leverages ambient heat, offering a greener alternative to traditional heating methods.
  • Roof Insulation Enhancement: Supplementary insulation added to the roof further improves the building’s thermal efficiency, reducing energy loss and contributing to a more stable indoor climate year-round.

Achievements and Impact

  • Energy Consumption Management: By implementing these upgrades, the project aims to manage its energy consumption effectively, targeting a significant reduction in energy use per square meter. This ambitious goal highlights the project’s commitment to exceeding typical energy efficiency standards for buildings of this type.
  • Sustainability in Mixed-Use Developments: The Salesiani Office Facilities project serves as a model for retrofitting historic buildings with modern energy solutions. It showcases the potential for mixed-use developments to contribute to urban sustainability goals without compromising their architectural integrity.

A Blueprint for Future Projects

The project’s success in balancing historical preservation with energy efficiency offers valuable insights for similar renovations. It underscores the importance of adopting innovative technologies and materials that align with sustainability objectives, providing a roadmap for future projects involving historic structures.


The Salesiani Office Facilities renovation project stands as a testament to the feasibility of integrating sustainable practices into the fabric of existing buildings. Through careful planning and the adoption of energy-efficient technologies, the project not only preserves the building’s historical value but also aligns it with contemporary environmental standards. As such, it represents a significant contribution to the field of sustainable architecture and urban development.