Gehry Partners has won an architectural competition for a new 300-unit residential tower in Berlin.
The development, which is owned by Hines, will be located at the D4 construction site between Hackescher Markt, Friedrichshain and Berlin-Mitte, adjacent to Hines' recently developed Die Mitte retail building.
As Berlin's first new high-rise residential development since the '70s, the project will rise to a maximum height of 492 feet, likely becoming the tallest building in Berlin and the tallest residential building of all Germany. It will contain approximately 500,000 square feet, will include small apartments and penthouses, and a portion of the tower will house a hotel.
This project represents the third time Hines has worked with the architecture firm. Gehry also designed Hines' DZ Bank in Berlin and the New World Center in Miami Beach, Florida, for which Hines served as development manager.
In order to find the best possible urban and architectural design solution for this important location, Hines, under an agreement with the Senate Department for Urban Development and the Environment as well as the Berlin-Mitte District Council, invited nine national and international architects to take part in an architectural competition in May 2013.
Following the first assessment in November 2013, four firms - Barkow Leibinger Architects, Gehry Partners, Ingenhoven Architects and Kleihues + Kleihues - were asked to refine their designs for a second and final phase of the competition.
On 23 January, a panel of judges decided on the architectural and urban design qualities of the submissions. The panel, chaired by Prof. Peter P. Schweger, included, among others: Regula Lüscher, Senate building director; Kristina Laduch, head of the City Planning Department Berlin-Mitte; and Christoph Reschke and Alexander Möll, co-managing directors of Hines Immobilien.
The winning design convinced the jury with its sculptural interpretation, achieved by rotating a number of cubes that relate to many of the city's focal points - in particular the neighbouring Karl-Marx-Allee.
Lüscher says: "Gehry's design is strong in visual expression and introduces an unusually eccentric, new pattern for this location. Nevertheless, the façade radiates agreeable tranquillity. In addition, the design blends well with the neighbourhood and conveys all aspects of metropolitan living."
Second place was awarded to Kleihues + Kleihues Gesellschaft von Architekten, and third place was awarded to Barkow Leibinger Gesellschaft von Architekten.
The designs presented by the competition winners will be publicly exhibited in the annex to the Lichthof at Köllnischer Park 3, 10179 Berlin, from January 27 to February 12.