Early Stage Design

Helping you take good decisions.

An innovation

What is Early Stage Design (ESD)

Early Stage Design, in short ESD, is where lies the core of our analysis automation in early phases of the design.

In other words we automatize what we can and focus where the attention is required. That means better and more information in less time. Don't believe it? See for yourself our ESD features.

Our Goals

Fast, high-quality and secure decisions

Faster decision making

Through automated analyses, we enable decision-making capability in early project phases. Decisions in this phase have an enormous impact on the project.

Higher data quality

Our goal is to facilitate your decisions by providing you with a high-quality data basis. For this, choose from the analyses through the ESD features.

Safer decisions

By comparing many variants and ranking them against benchmarks, decisions can be made with a high degree of certainty.

The process

The process of Early Stage Design.

The Features

Discover the ESD Features

Geometry Generation

Parametric design allows different building typologies to be created and compared with each other. Your suggestions influence the creation process.

Shadowed region

In some cases (for example, high-rise buildings) a shadow calculation is a legal requirement. In this case, the recording of shadow casts is integrated into the analysis.

Floor area calculations

Important key figures such as space efficiency, utilization factor or gross floor area can be displayed immediately and incorporated into your decision-making process.

Costs calculation

The component areas for the cost calculation are automatically extracted from the geometry according to element groups of the element-based construction cost plan (eBKP-H).

Energy and CO2 Construction

The environmental impact of the construction of the building is determined via the building components. This enables an early assessment of the effects of different geometries and building materials.

Energy and CO2 Operation

The energy demand and CO2 emissions for operation can be estimated. Detailed energy demand calculations become possible via an integrated thermal building simulation.


The classification of the key figures determined by the analyses is based, among other things, on the Swiss Sustainable Building Standard (SNBS) or Minergie.

Autmatic Report

The results of the analyses are documented in an automatically generated report. Thanks to the sound data basis, we can help you make better decisions.

New Features

Our goal is to provide you with a high-quality basis for decision-making. We would be happy to create new analyses tailored to your goals. Please do not hesitate to contact us.


Your contact person

Manuel Frey

Head of Department Digital Planning, Head of Early Stage Design (ESD)

manuel.frey@gruner.ch +41 31 917 20 90 Gruner Sägestrasse 73 CH-3098 Köniz

Natasha Catunda

ESD Lead Computational Designer

natasha.catunda@gruner.ch +41 31 917 20 91 Gruner Sägestrasse 73 CH-3098 Köniz

Andrea Fumagalli

ESD Computational Designer

andrea.fumagalli@gruner.ch +41 31 917 20 92 Gruner Sägestrasse 73 CH-3098 Köniz

Judith Rütsche

Head of Department Spatial Planning, Mobility and Sustainability

judith.ruetsche@gruner.ch +41 31 544 24 80 Gruner Industriestrasse 1 CH-3052 Zollikofen

Martin Beyeler

Head of Department Building Physics, Acoustics

martin.beyeler@gruner.ch +41 61 317 64 32 Gruner AG St. Jakobs-Strasse 199 CH-4020 Basel

Esther Rusnak

Head of Sustainability Competence Center

esther.rusnak@gruner.ch +41 61 317 62 64 Gruner St. Jakobs-Strasse 199 CH-4020 Basel

Stephan Matthias Parlow

Senior Expert Sustainability Management

stephan.parlow@gruner.ch Gruner AG St. Jakobs-Strasse 199 CH-4020 Basel

Alain Kraus

Head of Department Costs Planning

alain.kraus@gruner.ch +41 61 317 62 65 Gruner St. Jakobs-Strasse 199 CH-4020 Basel

Michael Schumacher

Head of Department Structural Engineering

michael.schumacher@gruner.ch +41 61 317 60 11 Gruner St. Jakobs-Strasse 199 CH-4020 Basel