• Holtenau-Ost

    New urban coastal landscapes

    With Holtenau-East, a new urban coastal landscape is being created on a former military site on the banks of the Kiel Fjord, which interweaves previously separate settlement structures and natural habitats. Holtenau East is defined by two impressive local scenes. On the one hand the Kiel Fjord with its maritime waterfront, on the other hand, the Endmoränen forest with its distinctive topography. They not only create the stage for the new development but are protagonists by representing the climatic, ecological and cultural context. The design further develops these two elements in terms of landscape and urban development and combines their spatial and atmospheric qualities to create a new urban coastal landscape. The result is three urban landscapes with a strong character.

    Together they form a closely networked and circular district landscape developed from the site. The three quarters provide strong, site-specific answers to future living, work and leisure needs. They differ in their use of water through adapted and integrated flood and sponge city concepts that strengthen the local ecosystems. Diverse structural and open space uses close to the water ensure a high quality of living. At the same time, they improve the range of jobs, supply, cultural and leisure offers for Holtenau and the surrounding communities.

    The rainwater is collected decentrally on green roofs and retention areas and feeds a central wetland, which reduces the rainwater load on the drainage system during peaks of precipitation. The wetland saves supply costs and complements the public space with atmospheric elements. It also offers a habitat for birds and butterflies, offers potential for nature-educational offers and protects the area from flooding.

    Idea
    2021
    Kiel-Holtenau
    Germany
  • Aquarium Bay Hotel

    Grounded on rich Albanian heritage.

    Aquarium Bay Hotel is designed based on the concept of sustainable tourism. The hotel comprises four separate pavilions, offering different experiences to their guests. Each pavilion has a distinct architectural language and shelters an inner courtyard with a specific and unique character. The four buildings contrast with their surroundings, as a way to accentuate and respect the outstanding local landscape. This landscape of rolling seaside hilltops covered in Mediterranean scrub, as well as the remote location, are considered two of the strongest, unique ‚assets' of the hotel.

    The approach to the hotel - by car, boat and helicopter but also by foot and bicycle – is carefully orchestrated, as it forms the start of the customers' journey. Internal circulation is organized by a series of footpaths, - a seaside path, a forest path and a main ‚barefoot' path - making for a sensory experience. The central lobby pavilion provides direct access to the spa, restaurants, conference rooms and casino. Additionally, atmospheric facilities like the plunge pool, the bonfire area, the botanical garden and the rock pool add to the guest experience. The most remote volume houses a small restaurant and bar that allows this building to be operated independent from the others, thus maximizing the privacy of its guests.

     

    Idea
    2019
    Aquarium Bay
    Albania
  • Integrated Comprehensive School Langenhagen

    With the new building respectively renovation, IGS (Integrated Comprehensive School) Langenhagen is changing from a school location with many buildings and addresses, separate uses and not barrier-free routes to an inclusive landscape of shared learning in close contact with the city and nature. Learning clusters with classrooms, differentiation areas and mixed-use recreation areas are organized around a central common centre and thus offer a variety of places to learn, linger, communicate and relax.

    The new school building is located at an urban node. While the south is characterized by loose and urban development and large-scale centre functions, the north is a green recreational area with old trees, green meadows and biotopes close to the water. The new structure mediates between these two worlds and creates a clear, urban address in the south as well as a central schoolyard in the north, which turns into a landscape park.

    Together with the existing cafeteria, the school building takes up a clear and public space. This is the place to arrive and linger for students, teachers and visitors. Supported by the large terrace of the cafeteria, this creates a lively space. The square is in close spatial connection with the newly designed bus stop, the bicycle parking spaces and the town hall square on the opposite side of the street. In the north, the structure interlocks carefully with the school park. Between the new building and the refurbished creative pavilion, there is a lively, enclosed, green break room, which connects the existing buildings (sports halls and creative pavilion) in an east-west direction. The compact building cubature maximizes the preservation of the existing trees and minimizes surface sealing.

    The building is designed as a wood-concrete hybrid construction. Optimal sun and glare protection while maximizing the use of daylight is guaranteed by blinds that align automatically depending on the amount of sunlight.

    completed
    2021
    Langenhagen (Hanover)
    Germany
  • Marconiplein

    How to raise a dike in an innercity environment?

    Nexus, from the Latin 'nectere', means a "connection or series of connections linking two or more things". Marconiplein is, indeed, at the crossroad of different flows: not only mobility but ecology, water protection, development.

    Our vision is rooted in the understanding of this space as a complex node, where traditionally, absolute priority has been given to transport. Our proposal aims to invert the paradigm of Marconiplein as a space - a sum of several leftover spaces- defined by infrastructures, but rather, addressing high-quality public spaces first, where infrastructural strategy follows. The design of the new square will be led by the principle of unveiling. If in history, infrastructures - considered as a major source of disruption - have been buried, hidden and elevated, technological progress and accurate urban solutions, offer now the opportunity of reconnecting to infrastructures.

    Specific solutions will range from sloping squares, new vertical cross-views, increased number of entrances, fostering the square as a seamless public space, where infrastructure is no more perceived as separated from the city.

    completed
    2021
    Rotterdam
    The Netherlands
  • Carbon-Based Design

    How can we ensure that the 1,000,000 new homes that are needed in the Netherlands before 2030 exert as little pressure as possible on the already difficult-to-achieve climate targets? Even if all future homes are built according to the current agreements (BENG [nearly energy-neutral building], and 4% emission reduction in the industry), the CO2 budget for construction (under a 1.5-degree warming scenario) will be used in 2026 already.

    As the construction sector, we are currently responsible for 38 % of all greenhouse gas emissions. The problem is definitely gaining momentum in the debate; however, the focus within our professional community seems mainly to be on single methods or materials - whereas the solution lies in an integral approach.

    Carbon-Based Design is this approach. It provides insight into the CO2 cycle and what role the construction sector and the circular construction economy play in it. The focus is on embodied carbon (or material-related emissions during the production and construction process) in residential construction. By gaining insight into the construction process and which parts of it have the most impact on the total emissions, we can adjust our design and development strategy accordingly. The aim is clear: to design and realize buildings with the lowest possible CO2 emissions, or ideally even CO2 storage.

    With a focus on the emissions of production and construction and the ratio of operational and embedded energy, we found solutions for the way from carbon exploitation to carbon sequestration.

    You can download a full-resolution online version of the Carbon-Based Design report here.

    completed
    2021
    Rotterdam
    The Netherlands
  • Drymades Promenade

    Strolling in vivid nature!

    Located in between the high mountains and the Ionian Sea in the South of Albania, the new 2 km long Drymades promenade wants to emphasize this duality by creating an impression of being immersed in nature and the greenery while having the beach feeling at the same time. By using organic shapes instead of straight lines, we create a green boulevard with different scenarios, points of view and vibes.

    The division in different zones helps on creating diversity and reflects the varieties and characteristics the area presents. The promenade aims to be an experience in itself with more quiet and natural zones on the side and a vivid part, the hotspot area, in the middle. Here you can find an underground bar which also serves as an elevated plaza or also a pier on the water with different functions on it. The project is unified by common elements, materials and concepts along the promenade such as stone walls, sand-coloured concrete paving and cut out stone or furniture in corten steel.

    One of the key elements of the project is the planting in random dispersion. It serves as shading but also helps at shaping the promenade and giving different scenarios and points of view.

    The kiosks, which are always located in the planters, provide the necessary services needed on the promenade. While the fixed bottom part is made of stone walls, the upper part is made from wood and is thought of as a flexible element that can adapt to the different functions and needs. The biggest kiosk serves as a bar and eating place, the smaller ones as newspaper or ice cream shops, and the smallest ones as public toilets and changing rooms. The roof made of corten steel makes the structure a sustainable one. It is slightly elevated from the main structures to allow the air to pass through and cool the structure underneath. It also collects the rainwater and with the proper inclination, brings it to the planter on the back.

    under construction
    2020
    Drymades
    Albania
  • Bochum Gerthe-West

    Three neighbourhoods for a green network.

    The focus of the spatial image for the inner-city development Bochum Gerthe-West is the connection and interweaving of the existing green spaces. As a starting point for the design, they create a new ecological corridor and open space network. Furthermore, the connections between existing centralities and free spaces are strengthened and supplemented with new sources of inspiration, such as new daycare centres and mobility hubs. Strategically placed, they form bridges between the building structures and natural areas and invite you into the green.

    The design suggests a coherent and lively green sweep that can be experienced and used by residents and residents through small-scale path connections and other open space functions.

    The rich stock of shrubs and trees creates distinctive rooms and atmospheres. Building structures are specifically inserted here. This creates a compact residential area in the northern part that fits into the built urban context. The focus here is on diverse neighbourhood-related open spaces that offer room for communal uses. In the northeast, the green urban landscape is supplemented by four rows of block edge and row house typologies. They define clear settlement edges between the residential area and the landscape and still have strong visual references to the vastness of the adjacent fields. The Green Ring runs between the neighbourhoods, taking up the striking trees and networking the area for non-motorized traffic.

    New typologies are set along with the dense forest structure in the heart of the project area. In the so-called wilderness quarter, residents can experience nature. Open, small-grained and carefree play with the trees, the new buildings create an urban wilderness.

    Key figures
    Area of ​​new development: 19,302 m² (21,769 m² *)
    Gross floor area new development: 60,771m² (68,173m² *)
    Sealed areas total: 59,286 m²
    Total unsealed areas: 63,980 m²
    Approximate number of residential units: 560 (625 *)
    Number of parking spaces in district garages: 557 (668m² *)
    *including optional surfaces

    completed
    2021
    Bochum
    Germany
  • ecovillage - Gate to the Garden

    The "Gate to the Garden" building is part of our project ecovillage in Hanover. It is located at the transition between the centre and the Green Ring and forms the interface between the intimate neighbourhood and communal space with a high degree of publicity.

    The L-shaped building consists of two stepped structures, which are accessed and connected via a generously usable arcade. On the one hand, the arcade enables a diverse exchange between the residents and, on the other hand, a very high degree of flexibility in the use of the building. Based on a grid, a wide variety of apartment sizes and forms of living can be offered and the living space can be adapted to future changing needs.

    The main focus in the development of "Gate to the Garden" is residential use. This is supplemented by a shared bicycle and storage room, two laundry rooms, a common room and an experiment room for water use and food cultivation operated by the entire ecovillage with access to the adjacent aquaponics greenhouse.

    Responsible use of building materials makes a significant contribution to the sustainability of the property. As early as the construction of the building, the conservation of natural resources is included through a design that is suitable for recycling. Through the targeted choice of materials and the possibility of a clean separation of the elements used, the amount of waste is reduced and the rate of reuse and recyclability increases. The greatest possible use of the renewable building material wood not only minimizes the CO2 emissions during the construction of the building but also serves as important CO2 storage.

    With the development of our ecovillage project in Hanover, there is a great opportunity to make an important contribution to future-oriented urban development with a balanced triad of social, ecological and economic sustainability. Find out more here.

    in progress
    2021
    Hanover
    Germany
  • Kieler Knick

    striking gate + green neighbourhood

    The area at the Waldwiesenkreisel forms an important, previously misused entrance to Kiel city centre. With the development of the property, there is now a great opportunity to formulate a distinctive entrance to the city and to create urgently needed, high-quality living and working space.

    By shielding the street noise, a quiet, green residential area is created inside the building complex, which brings the lush, northern open space into the quarter through its open design. This creates a green gem with its own identity in a heterogeneous urban environment.

    The structural composition and the landscape-architectural interventions of the mixed-used "Kieler Knick" create a concise design language. The courtyard and the roof terraces are open-space extensions of the building and form an urban meeting point for workers, residents and visitors. Based on the diverse spatial program, places of encounter and exchange are created, as well as space for retreat and peace. The interplay of the dense trees and green roofs creates a particularly pleasant climatic situation in the quarter. In dialogue with the different types of living, a wide range of open spaces is created for shared and private use.

    Additionally, Mobility is entirely geared towards the environmental network. Pedestrian and bicycle traffic are prioritized with different concepts. All necessary parking spaces for the MIT (tenants and visitors) are organized in the two separate underground garages. There are charging stations for e-vehicles as well as possible car-sharing offers in the direct vicinity of the development cores.

    completed
    2021
    Kiel
    Germany
  • Future quarters at Ostpark

    Liveliness makes the city!

    In Paderborn, with the vacancy of the Barker barracks, there is a unique opportunity to create a piece of city that shows solutions to current challenges.

    The green heart, a new open space for Paderborn, forms the central element of the urban planning concept. It complements the local recreation and leisure activities for the entire city, creates points of attraction and brings the residents together. It is also of particular importance for ecological functions such as decentralized, plant-based rainwater management. A total of 18 hectares of green space support the city's biodiversity and climate resilience.

    Strong edges with urban density frame the green centre. They develop the surrounding peripheral areas of the city structurally and functionally. The existing buildings will be converted and integrated into the edges. In doing so, they enrich the neighbourhoods structurally and programmatically.

    A total of three new quarters offer spaces for living, working, meeting and leisure. They complement the neighbouring districts with future-oriented forms of living, learning locations and workplaces. An innovative and resilient energy and heating system make the new quarters climate-positive.

    Mobility is organized sustainably and with as few cars as possible. Therefore, it is connected to today, oriented towards the future, robust and adaptable. The concept serves as a model for future developments in Paderborn. The traffic areas are designed primarily for bicycle and pedestrian traffic; rounded off by a dense public transport network. District garages on the edge of the area guarantee accessibility by car as well, but will gradually become less important in the course of the mobility transition and are accordingly designed to be reusable or easy to dismantle.

    completed
    2021
    Paderborn