To Baumschlager-Eberle, the site at Hamburg’s Sandtorhafen harbor was a very favorable location for construction. The neutrality of building use and the structural orientation of planning are as natural as they are perceptible in the tradition of harbor architecture. Baumschlager-Eberle reflect this common sense of industrial architecture, just as they integrate the new tasks of the service society to achieve that identity of users and architecture which ensures the longevity of a building.
Identity is related to the site. At Hamburg’s “sand gate harbor”, the name is programmatic: the new office building, together with the building by David Chipperfield opposite it, marks the gateway to the adjoining dense settlement in the southern area of the new Harbor City. Identity is also related to the special features of local architecture. With the building’s facade, Baumschlager-Eberle ensure great memorability for passers-by who are, after all, the qualified majority of users of architecture. It will be the glass sun blinds which characterize the physiognomy of the building. At the same time, the slats reflect sunlight, so that the main cooling load of the building is effectively reduced overall. As is the case with the sunspots on our galaxy’s source of heat, this creates a facade of “cold sinks” designed to avoid costly HVAC.
The interior also reflects the formation of identities. The traditional Hamburg office building type is further developed, and its distanceto-height ratios are transposed onto the two inner courtyards. This reflection of Hamburg’s typical transportation routes offers an immediate benefit: the building’s internal vertical axis becomes visible, and natural lighting is ensured for the meeting rooms facing towards the courtyards. However, the architects’ intention is not to draw an emblem of old Hamburg. Instead, they use its organizing principles to create an urban public sphere on the inside, which puts the all too random and personal nature of conventional office buildings in perspective.
Client: DC Commercial GmbH & Co. KG
Planning: Baumschlager Eberle
Project architect: Stefan Beck, Michael Gondert, Tim-Philipp Brendel
Assistance: Jessica von Bachellé, Torsten Guder, Anke Spittel, Jürgen Stoppel, Chrysanthi Zachari
Structural engineer: Ingenieurbpro Dr. Binnewies
Building technology: Ingenieurgesellschaft w33 GmbH
Fire prevention: Ingenieurbüro Wackermann
Site area: 2.748 m2
Area of building: 2.319 m2
Gross floor area: 14.264 m
Net floor area: 11.400 m2
Competition: 2006 / 1. Preis
Commencement of work: 2009
Award: DGNB Gold