Architects: Henning Larsen Architects
Collaborator: Knippers Helbig
Team At Henning Larsen Architects: Louis Becker (Partner), Werner Frosch (Project Director) Daniel Baumann, Sonny Holmberg, Juliane Demel, Luísa Paiva, Eileen Dorer
Client: Land Baden-Württemberg, Stuttgart
Status: 1st prize, interview competition
Gross Floor Area: 2,800 m2
Photographs: Courtesy of Henning Larsen Architects
Forming a distinctive entrance to the listed Baden-Wurttemberg parliament building, the design for the Citizen and Media Centre by Henning Larsen Architects recently won the first prize in the competition. The new entrance is shaped like a large amphitheatre, sunk in the ground to attract its 65,000 visitors a year. The round shape also creates an agora in the center, ideal for political meetings and public cultural events alike. More images and architects’ description after the break.
With the new building created to provide access to exhibitions and press conferences, the shape stands as an emblem of the democratic process: in ancient Greece the agora formed the centre of political and public life, as a scene for debates, meetings and theatre. The Citizen and Media Centre is primarily situated below grade, and is subordinate to the listed modernist parliament building. The new building fits in as a part of the landscape, preserving the prominence of the existing landmark.
The new centre consists of a foyer, conference spaces and exhibition area, all visually connected to the outside agora. For security purposes, these areas can be closed off from the parliament building itself. This separation also makes it possible possible to host larger events at late hours, without compromising the parliament building.
The new Citizen and Media Centre is located in Stuttgart Castle Park and creates a new public space in the urban park. The surrounding landscape and ample daylight have provided inspiration for the design of the new building. Special cylindrical windows create a bright and friendly atmosphere, and filter the daylight, giving visitors the impression of walking under a big tree.