Location: HAMBURG
Date: 2011-2013
Size: 6000m² FAÇADE AREA
Credits: ACME Team (Julia Cano, Stefano Dal Piva, Marc Dufour-Feronce, Friedrich Ludewig, Jan Saggau, Heidrun Schuhmann, Keigo Yoshida)
This existing five-level department store in the centre of Hamburg is located on one of the busiest shopping streets which links the central railway station with the city’s main square. Built in the early 1960s, the existing store is an example of postwar modernist department stores in Germany, with its typical façade of small ceramic modules forming the outer façade layer which has now reached the end of its lifespan. The proposed new façade is inspired by the city’s century-old brick tradition in general and in particular by the adjacent 1930s-era Kontorhäuser, built in the style known as Brick Expressionism. The façade plays with three-dimensional large-scale surfaces, lending the building a sculptural quality, as one’s perception varies according to distance and location. Different types of brick bonds are used to generate differentiated degrees of perforation and transparency, allowing the building to receive natural light during the day and to glow at night. Using advances in building technology, the façade is designed to be a self-stabilising 25m-tall brick wall with a façade depth of one standard 9cm brick. The prefabricated glued contruction makes sole use of the standard brick format and will be assembled offsite by robots controlled by computer scripting. This will enable the façade to be extremely economical and sustainable – keeping the use of materials to an absolute minimum, reducing embodied energy and minimising construction energy and wastage.