In 1992 the decision was made to move several federal offices to the new Bundesländer. In 2005, the UBA was moved from Berlin to Dessau in Sachsen-Anhalt, a state that has experienced radical demographic changes (shrinking) since German reunification. The “Bauhaus” city Dessau was also one of the cities of the IBA – International Building Exhibition Urban Redevelopment Saxony-Anhalt 2010, which with the slogan ‘Less is more’ dealt with this shrinking phenomenon in an innovative way.
IBA Saxony-Anhalt 2010
“The building is located in a former industrial area in Dessau. The site was selected in order to demonstrate the possibilities (and challenges) of a brownfield site for sustainable urban development. Contaminated land was treated, and a small existing railway station and a former factory for gas appliances were both integrated into the design. The overall form of the new building was designed to allow Dessau residents to have continued access to a large part of the site as a public park. The new building is entered via the Forum, a crescent-shaped space that draws the park into the building and acts as a link between the public areas, including a library, an exhibition space, an information centre and an auditorium. The Forum connects to an Atrium, around which the various Agency departments are arranged.” (sauerbruch hutton architects)
“The new building combines a compact volume and a high degree of thermal insulation with strategies of intelligent services engineering and the use of renewable energy sources. In particular, it benefits from the use of a large geothermal heat-exchange system, a photo-voltaic plant and thermal solar panels. Building materials were chosen according to their ecological suitability, the most visible element being the timber panel façade which is prototypical in Germany on this scale.” (sauerbruch hutton architects)
Picture credits: Katleen De Flander
The driving thought behind this BLOG is that we are in the need of a major transition in thinking and we need to get inspired. We have to approach ‘living’, ‘moving’, ‘using’, ‘creating’ in a different way. Many designers, urban planners, architects and other creative people are frontrunners for change and frontrunners need to be appreciated and shared.