The design of the new concrete entrance to the Grisons parliament building by Valerio Olgiati provides the building itself and the institution it houses with a suitable identity and a sumptuous, refined character.
The idea is to allow all visitors with or without disabilities to access the building in a comfortable way. The stony part of the new building is made of white, monolithic, in situ concrete, while the railing is made of massive bronze. The white concrete is composed of white cement, white sand, and gray gravel from the local area. The walking surfaces have been sanded down and roughened. From the square on the south side, a ramp leads to the pre-existing entrance door.
The proportions of the base and the room height are classically monumental and imbue the entrance with a public and festive character. The roof stretches out over the ramp and has a width of 18 meters, an area of 70 square meters, and a weight of 90 tons. This heavy element is only supported by a thin pillar and by a “hanging column”. The impression of heaviness lends the space under the roof a sense of interiority and protection. The simultaneity of exposed and hidden forces results in a somewhat unreal character.
Entrance to the Grisons Parliament building The “hanging column” stands next to the entrance door and leads the visitor inside the building. Slightly rotated out of the surrounding geometry, it stands on the highest point of the base and seems to continue rotating. It playfully balances the apparently weightless roof, as if gravity did not exist.