Today I observed it again… it is always surprising!
In Wettingen, at the roundabout Landstrasse-Staffelstrasse, four ravens are watching the traffic from their nest in a curious and a little scared way.
This is an interesting wooden work made by the artist Alex Schaufelbühl. According to the newspaper Aargauer Zeitung (online article from 16.8.2012), the sculptor was inspired by the hundreds of ravens which are spending the night on the trees near the artificial lake of Wettingen.
The masterpiece is made of driftwood and the birds are not painted black, but their dark colour is the result of a flame-thrower. The sculpture was installed at the end of 2009.
This is one of the street with the highest traffic. The big wooden baby birds of the roundabout are probably reminding us that nature, even if dark, even if sometimes hidden on top of some trees, is always to be preserved and shall not be disturbed too much…
Wettingen is proudly the biggest “village” (as opposite to city or town) of Switzerland!
Basically a big village near the city of Baden, historical home of the multinationals ABB and General Electric (former Alstom).
Even if Wettingen is not a city, on its streets you can find something unique! A roundabout with some figures wearing swimsuits and taking… shower! And the showers are real, they have real water!
Of course the showers are working only in summer! We are in Switzerland, everything is planned!
Yesterday I was driving through Nussbaumen (Gemeinde – community of – Obersiggenthal) and I noticed again its main roundabout.
We can define it as a “seasonal” or “multi-purpose” roundabout.
Thanks to the various poles, depending on the season or on some particular event, the roundabout can be “made up” with suitable flags or decoration.
Now we are approaching the Carnival time… or, as they say here, “Fasnacht”.
And that’s why the area is now full of flags showing a funny character with fake nose, laughable hat and pretending to dance.
Welcome in Nussbaumen, a town with more than 30% foreigners, where you immediately see when it’s Carnival time!
The newly redesigned roundabout in Schneisingen is modelled on the main big Company located in this area (actually in the neighbouring community of Niederweningen)… just next to this roundabout.
The metal “rusted” plates represent the three companies of the Bucher Industries Group which have their headquartes in Niederweningen:
– Bucher Unipektin (the press visible in the picture): Company producing machines and plants for the fabrication of fruit juice and instant food products;
– Bucher Municipal: Company producing street sweepers;
– Bucher Landtechnik: Company selling tractors of leading brands in Switzerland.
If you are interested in these companies (but here the matter becomes really technical), the relevant websites are listed below:
It is nice to have a big Company “forged” (as the metal plates of the roundabout) in the local landscape…
A small village in the Swiss Canton of Argovia with a long tradition of wine production, firstly mentioned in the 13th century!
With a little more than 1’000 inhabitants and 38 hectare vineyards, Tegerfelden is the second municipality in Argovia for wine production with 10% of all wine types produced in Argovia. And it is really a village dedicated to wine!
And quite famous wine kinds such as:
– red: Pinot noir, Garanoir, Gamaret, Dunkelfelder, Dornfelder, Cabernet Dorsa, Regent, Diolinoir, Zweigelt;
– white: Riesling, Sylvaner (Müller-Thurgau), Pinot gris, Chardonnay, Sauvignon blanc, Räuschling, Traminer.
To underline the importance of wine for this small community, at the entrance of the village, a giant grape stands in the middle of the roundabout, a big violet grape, lying on a grape leaf.
Ah, such a nice feeling entering this village, surrounded by vineyards on the hills and feeling the taste of wine in the air!
The useful pieces of information were taken from the official website of this municipality: http://www.tegerfelden.ch/de/portrait/weinbau/
Why fossil “statues”?
This is the first (!) double roundabout (two roundabouts one after the other) of Canton Argovia in Switzerland, inaugurated in 2008.
The artistic decorations were done by two local artists, who were given the task to create shapes representing the village of Ehrendingen (Tiefenwaag quarter).
The sculptors referred to the special geology of this area.
At the south-east border of the former cement quarry the formation of dogger stones was observed.
In the sandy limestone and marl of the young dogger stones the following fossils could be found: mussels, brachiopods and even ammonites!
(Many thanks for the information to the “Ehrendinger Runde, Kreisel Tiefenwaag”).
Why the cable car wagon?
Already in the Middle Ages a gypsum mine was existing in Ehrendingen: gypsum was produced and milled in the village.
At the end of the 19th century, the demand for construction material increased. And due to the fact that in this area also limestone and clay were naturally available, in 1892-1893 a cement factory was established. Around 400 people were working in this factory. A rail cable car was transporting the material from the quarry to the factory. Another cable car connected the factory with the railway station of the neighbouring village of Niederweningen.
Unfortunately, due to the relentless competition in the cement business and the crisis in the building industry, the cement factory dramatically bankrupted in 1902. Today only one building wing is remaining, the one where the offices were located.
(“Historical” information taken from the archive of “Gemeinde Ehrendingen”. Many thanks!)
Some of my posts will be dealing with roundabouts.
Yes, the circular intersection or junction in which road traffic flows almost continuously in one direction around a central island (Thanks to Wikipedia for this definition and the picture).
Why speaking of roundabouts in Switzerland (and not in England?).
Because roundabouts are kind of institution in Switzerland! And not only: they are a kind of space to celebrate the…local culture.
How? I will try to explain this in the next posts of this section.
Have fun. And go on spinning around in the…Swiss roundabouts!