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Leisure & culture

New multiplex-cinema Pathé-Küchlin, Basel

Old and new 
In Steinenvorstadt, Basel’s traditional cinema district, the city’s first multiplex cinema has opened in November 2007: The “Küchlin”, constructed in 1911-12 as a variety theatre, has been extended by the addition of an adjacent new building replacing the former “Comedy”. It forms a cinema complex with a total of eight halls and about 2,300 seats. At the same time, offices, attic flats and a new restaurant have been erected. 

Structure 
Three superposed cinema halls, each arranged at right angles relative to one another, are incorporated in the surrounding building structure. Interventions in the old building, part of which is a protected monument, were essentially limited to the elements integrated in the former stage tower plus the demolition of the neighboring building. There, at the interface between the “Küchlin” and the new building, a wedge-shaped lobby zone provides access to the halls. 

Façade 
The façade of the new building is deliberately designed in a closed form. The motif of a colored, illuminated stage curtain appears at night, creating an associative reference to the cinema interior. A stone curtain spans the entire width of the façade in a concrete frame. The plasticity of its surface is modeled after that of the neoclassical Küchlin façade with its profiled semi-columns. 

Client
Kinvar AG, Basel

Period of time 
2004 – 2006

Investment
33,0 Mio. CHF

Tasks
Architecture, realization 

Collaboration
Bernhard Floris Architekt