Burgdorf Prison

The Zeughausareal Burgdorf project was Switzerland's first PPP project and encompassed the demolition of the old buildings, as well as the planning, financing, construction, and operation of three planning units, a prison with 110 beds, a street inspection office (including an operation centre and an administration centre), over an area of 30,000m2.


SPV General Manager Andreas Schröder outlined the background to the Burgdorf Prison project.

"A significant challenge for our team was the fact that the new administrative centre would need to accommodate 19 different government departments servicing locations such as  Burgdorf, Langnau, Aarwangen, and Fraubrunnen, and a requirement for approximately 450 workplaces.

"That means it’s important to ensure that the available floorspace is used efficiently as well as creating a big demand for a pool of meeting rooms which can accommodate so many different departments.


"Another area which had to be carefully considered was the need to create a sustainable building – that’s not quite so simple with a prison project as windows, by the nature of a prison, need to have more secure metal frames. However, the design successfully met the demands of the Swiss low energy housing standard Minergie-P-Eco.

"In addition, to ensure the best possible energy efficiency, heating and cooling systems using hydro-extractor, biomass, and solar power were installed. We were also able to work with the client to install a biomass heating system which offers greater efficiency and reduces energy consumption."