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159 Baufeld 84 Competition, 3rd prize, Hamburg 2019

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status: competition. 3rd prize
program: housing
location: Baakenhafen, HafenCity, Hamburg
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Julia Kaulen, Alina Uhlenbrock
client: Hamburger Wohnen eG & building cooperative „AMIGO“
date: August 2019

The transformation of the ‘hafen’ (harbor) into HafenCity is a challenge. Where once large-scale mono-functionality of harbor basins, crane facilities and quay sheds dominated, a small-scale mixed quarter is now emerging. This project seeks to weave these strands—of place, identity, function, construction, space and material—together. The industrial grandeur remains tangible; the openness of the formerly mono-functional large remains present in the small-scale mixed.

This begins with the structure of the building, a hybrid of skeleton and load-bearing bulkhead construction. This three-nave masonry pier structure is the unifying essence of the building, binding together space, material and façade. Its neutral spatial structure enables the construction of 30 different flat types with specific requirements for divisibility, switch-ability and, in some cases, very determinate dimensions. Changes in family or occupant structure throughout the entire house can thus be accommodated without structural interference. Thanks to short spans, composite timber ceilings and prefabricated elements are possible, reducing carbon-hungry materials and allowing for easy re- and deconstruction. On the facades, the structure is reinterpreted as functional ornamentation. This restrained narrative is contextual: it is a masonry building on the harbor. Was there before? Is it a converted warehouse building? The visible structure, the ordinariness of living and its prominent location make for a quietly peculiar building.

The terp-formed pedestal facing the Versmannstraße and the promenade along the wharf below result in the building’s two ground floors. The plan development follows, subtly differentiating the building into two volumes: an L-shaped structure—eight stories to the North and five to the South—sits atop the terp, while a four-story cube faces onto the promenade. Offset by half a story, but with an aligned parapet, they form a split-level building which is nevertheless legible as an independent body; first cut in, then exposed. The upper ground floor is hidden from the street by its neighbor—the communal entrance courtyard is reached through a passage—while the lower ground floor perforates the terp wall modestly, connecting it with the promenade. Here the 1,5-floor high ‘Quarter-pipe’ communal space is accessible from both sides, constituting the first of the buildings various communal spaces. Others include a play place at ground level, a communal kitchen/terrace and multiple roof gardens. These spaces, the two volumes, and the apartments themselves are united through a single external stair: the social heart of the building. The staircase creates an address and an identity, offering easy ascent through the split levels, casual interactions, and —from the 4th floor upwards—views onto the Hamburg harbor.

Englische Linie

152 Alternative Histories Exhibition, London, Brussels, Dublin 2019-2021

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status: contribution to the exhibition “Alternative Histories”
program: model
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser,
Mariel Kaiser-Crompton, Alina Uhlenbrock, Laura Fuchs
client: Drawing Matter, The Architecture Foundation,
Marius Grootveld, Jantje Engels
date: March 2019

BeL (*2000), Anne-Julchen Bernhardt (*1971) and Jörg Leeser (*1967): On Walter Pichler's Sketch for the Underground City, 1960-64, Model, 2019, metal, concrete, plaster, paint, foam, wood, pastel calk, wood glue, paper, coal, styrofoam, plastic, play dough, sandpaper and plasticine.

The selected drawing – a light-hearted but somewhat nervous sketch bearing the title “Sketch for the Underground City” – belongs to an early body of work by Walter Pichler.
Working on abstract, hypothetical cities and buildings, Pichler questions the relationship of oppositional systems and investigates into positive and negative space, the designed and the found object, movement in space and movement of space. He is fascinated with infrastructure, spatial networks and the architecture of transition.

Over the course of four years he produced several series of drawings and objects, as the first seem to be mostly investigative and only occasionally presentation drawings, the latter are artifacts of meticulous craftsmanship in metal, concrete and plaster. Resting in time as singular entities, they obtain an almost transcendental aura; their painstakingly precise and slow process of making is inscribed into their abstract yet detailed manifestation. Form, space, light, material and surface are taken into the realm of fetish objects, the Sublime hovers within and around them.

The enigmatic objects are called Compact Building, Underground Building, Mouth of an Underground City, Core of an Underground City, Building over Infrastructure and Underground Building with extendable core. There is no record of an object titled the Underground City, the selected drawing solemnly bears that name.

Our model is neither abstract nor enigmatic but concrete. It is a model not an object. Its simple stereometric volumes are directly taken from Pichler's sketch. As a feasibility study it explores possible levels of detail Pichler's sublime objects would have faced, if they had been taken as representative model in an architectural process. The model is in search of the inherent beauty of the ordinary, it emphatically embraces the everyday, where the Sublime is just around the corner. Still, the Underground City remains the Other Space, pink cavities crouch underneath the surface.

pictures 11–17: Walter Pichler: “Skulpturen, Gebäude, Projekte”,
Residenz Verlag, Salzburg, Wien, 1992

Englische Linie

121 Mauenheim Ideas Competition, Cologne 2015

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status: ideas competition "Zukunft Wohnen"
program: densification of housing areas
location: Mauenheim, Cologne
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Michel Kleinbrahm, Leonard Palm, Gina Rauschtenberger, Christiane Schmidt
client: Stadt Köln, Wohnungs- und Baugenossenschaft Mieterschutz eG
date: November 2015

Re-densification of this block at ‘Mauenheimer Gürtel’ is enabled by the site’s good connection to public transit, the existing retail and supply infrastructure of the neighboring ‘Nippes’ district and, in particular, the proximity of recreational space.

First, the interior of the block is enlivened with the insertion of slim ‘entrance’ slabs into the block at the North and South. The first floors of these slabs are open with 3.50 m clear height; bicycles can be parked here, and the block community gains meeting room and a workroom. Further interventions to the existing building are minimized, with only one apartment converted to ensure an escape route, while new apartments are supported above the existing building with an independent structure, giving the whole block 3-4 extra floors of living. The new building is designed as a timber modular construction, with each apartment consisting of five prefabricated modules. These modules can be transported by truck, while the support structure is delivered largely finished. Lifted over the existing building by crane, the erection of the structure takes only a few days.

The apartments themselves are planned as open-use, accessible 100 m2 four-room apartments. The rooms can be easily divided, creating a 7-room apartment from four modules. The very homogeneous existing building (almost only 1- to 2-room apartments) is thus complemented and hybridized by a differentiated and flexible resident population of families, student and senior living communities.

Englische Linie

133 Kooperative Kleinstadt IBA Thüringen Cooperative Workshop, Apolda 2017

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status: cooperative workshop
program: school, workshops, housing
location: Apolda
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Michel Kleinbrahm, Jakob Wolters
client: City of Apolda, IBA Thüringen
date: March 2017

Cooperative Small Town 2050

"Neither the village nor the big city makes any serious effort to fulfill the demand that has always existed for us: to develop everything individually and in such a way as to be as organic as possible, or leading of a self-sustaining life."
Heinrich Tessenow: Handwerk und Kleinstadt, Berlin, 1919, p. 15

"Since [the small town] can indeed, to a great extent, form a world for itself and seek to develop independence, the freedom of all other worldly circles is self-evident to it, and as the small town strives for its own personal existence, it recognizes immediately, from within itself, the conditions of personal freedom, and thereby, in the large-worldly or large-political sense, the ability to take interest and action again."
Heinrich Tessenow: Handwerk und Kleinstadt, Berlin, 1919, p. 62

Germany is characterized by contradictory developments; in the big cities there is a housing shortage, while rural regions are drying up. This is more evident in Thuringia than in other federal states; while the cities of Erfurt, Weimar and Jena are growing, the other municipalities are predicted to experience a dramatic population decline over the coming decades (see Bertelsmann Stiftung, 2015). In Apolda however, its structural, social and economic distinction from the big cities is not seen as a disadvantage, but as a basic requirement for sustainable development. The Cooperative Small Town 2050 envisions the balanced small town of the future, focusing on regulative practices in the areas of energy, food production, and labor. Apolda thus serves as a model for a federal state consisting primarily of villages, small and medium-sized towns.

This Cooperative Town is framed as a ‘work in progress.’ It does not follow a master plan, but develops according to a charter with cooperatively agreed goals, decided on by the Future Council. The council is interdisciplinary by nature, bringing together interested citizens and potential citizens of Apolda. They are responsible for developing regenerative systems of transport, food, energy, work and education; which projects are implemented in which order thus depends on the towns citizens. The diversity of the measures, their distribution in the area and their networking are therefore decisive.

The Future Councils meet regularly in the charter space on the RST site, where a multidisciplinary technical school focuses on the development of cradle-to-cradle. The school consists of workshops, experimental fields, exhibition and seminar rooms, library, studios, co-working, work yard, warehouse, start-up labs, the charter meeting room, café, beer garden, combined heat and power plant, market and housing. The school is a microcosm of the model town. Here, craftsmen, artists and scientists learn, live and work together on the questions of the future, testing and modeling autonomous systems. The school grounds are not a fenced enclave, but part of the city; a new service road crosses the campus, connecting all the school's public spaces and opening them up to the surrounding town. The pupils thus research and live in community with the townspeople, integrated into the society they serve.  

Englische Linie

136 Grün für 97 Competition, Baakenhafen Hamburg 2017

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status: competition
program: housing
location: Baakenhafen, HafenCity, Hamburg
team BeL: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Alia Mortada, Roman Krükel
client: cooperative board HeimatMole
date: April 2017

In the home of the Heimatmole building community, big life changes do not mean moving out, but small architectural changes. Having a child, caring for elderly parents, separations and group living arraignments can be accommodated by installing a new door or closing a doorway with a wooden stud wall. The house offers maximum adaptability through minimal intervention. This is made possible by an architecture structured around a multitude of neutral spaces. Not simple intermediate spaces, the rooms have precisely determined dimensions, allowing them to accommodate all facets of life; kitchen, workshop, bedroom, dining room, eat-in kitchen, children's room, utility room, music room, library, youth room and office now fit into every room. Through a central diffusion of bathrooms, water (and thus potential kitchens) is available throughout the floor-plan, allowing for a wide variety arrangements. The office, work room or guest flat can become autonomous without expensive conversion.

The building stands directly on the Warf plaza, enhancing the creative potential of the neighborhood with its mixture of living and working. The two-story base of the building features many doors, and a series of double height spaces. The most public of these is the communal ‘Heimatclub,’ while the others are the defining features of the four live/work maisonette apartments at ground level. These apartments are offered privacy by a thin layer of climbing plants. They are use-flexible, but achieve this not in their floorplan, but in their volume. The residents determine the character of their plaza though their individual decisions: is it studio, office, living room or kitchen at ground level? Each of these maisonettes is completed with a terrace on the courtyard side of the buildings.

Above the base, the relationship between the public side and the protected communal side is flipped. While on the Warftplatz the residents form a counterpart to the neighboring house, the courtyard side faces the Elbe river, visible to the whole city. On the upper floors therefore, the façade needs to offer privacy from the city while participating in its image. These contradictory requirements of protection and representation are handled with a green scaffold. This element is both technical and ecological in character, supporting a multitude of climbing and flowering plants, and crowned with an energy-harvesting wind turbine. This façade is no empty image, but full of life. Its balconies create a direct relationship between the courtyard and the building’s residents, offering views of and from the city, while flowering trellises attract birds and insects. 

 

Englische Linie

092 NUK II Competition, Ljubljana 2012

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status: project
program: New National and University Library
location: Ljubljana, Slovenia
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Matthias Hoffmann, Wolfgang Zeh
date: March 2012

Library is a place of permanence and continuity. It is rooted in Roman remains. Its geometry is based on the universal orthogonal grid of Roman colonial planning. Yet it is a place of change, openness and progress. As a laboratory of knowledge it nurtures scholarship and community.

Here time is no longer linear but becomes simultaneous. Library melts time into a single presence. There is no antagonism of old and new, no ideological compulsion to destroy and overcome. Whether we rest on the shoulders of giants or whether giants stand in our way, the future will know. Library pays tribute to the rich urban fabric of Ljubljana and complements Plečnik's city with humility. It balances between civic grandeur and modesty. To be the New National Library and yet one among many buildings Library is just slightly detached from the city block, an almost stand-alone monument. Almost. Its distribution of building mass emphasizes Zoisova Street as an "University Boulevard" and adapts in scale towards French Revolution Square. Both entrances are marked with recesses and grand stairs. The gap between the city block and Library opens a pedestrian path to cross the courtyard. Access of vehicles for loading, the handicapped, and restricted parking is also permitted here.

Library expands the limits of typologies, it is an open plan building yet contains six distinguished public rooms. Free access shelves and restricted archive areas blend into a continuous space. Physically they are separated by glass walls. Horizontally the public rooms have no limits, the rooms are defined by their voids and their natural light.

A structural system of waffle slabs supported on cores and cross-shaped columns allows large spans and a minimum of piled foundations. The impact on the archeological remains is minimized, the flexibility of the library space is maximized. Library is an open building, the entrance level is a 24h zone. Five reading rooms and the multi-functional hall are spread across the floors. They create zones of distinct character, each with individual spatial qualities. The user can retire to his place of choice. In the special collection he will be among Roman ruins, in the grand reading room underneath the sky. The multipurpose hall is situated on Level 0 and can be used independently from the library.

Library is a place of presence and identity. It is a physical space, it has weight but is still floating. It defines space but stimulates interpretation. Library is multi-folded space.

Englische Linie

118 Quartier Spielbudenplatz Urban Design Competition, 1st prize, Hamburg-St.Pauli 2015 – BeL & NL Architects

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status: in progress
program: multi-use; housing, hotel, shopping, entertainment etc.
location: St. Pauli, Hamburg
team BeL: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Paula Frasch, Matthias Hoffmann, Conrad Kersting, Christiane Schmidt, Wolfgang Zeh
team NL: Kamiel Klaasse, Kirsten Huesig, Barbora Hlavackova, Laura Riano Lopez, Laura Nazzari, Guilia Pastore
client: Bayerische Hausbau GmbH & Co. KG, Bezirksamt Hamburg Mitte
date: August 2015

St. Pauli is a neighborhood of Hamburg known for its red-light district and for its coexistence of extremes. ‘Der Kiez’ is a unique biotope for sub-cultures, one of the rare strongholds in the resistance against Disneyfication. The tenants here struggled for years to save the Esso Häuser from demolition, but after a forced eviction in December 2013, the protest's focus switched towards securing the return of tenants to a new building. Under the auspices of the so-called PlanBude an intense participation process with the citizens of St. Pauli took place. The PlanBude formulated the St. Pauli Code by conducting interviews and collecting over 2000 suggestions, wherein residents used drawings, clay models and letters to express their hopes and fantasies. This extraordinary bottom-up process formed the basis for an urban planning competition to develop the now vacant plot of slightly over 6.000 m² on the Reeperbahn.

The St. Pauli code in short:
1. Diversity instead of uniformity
2. Small-scaledness
3. Affordable instead expensive
4. Originality and tolerance
5. Appropriation and vitality
6. Experiment and subculture
7. Public space without consumerism

Is it possible to safeguard (or even catalyze) the specific character of St. Pauli in anything new?

The urban plan is based on a strategy of small parcels, ´Kleinteilig', in order to guarantee diversity. The overall plot will be subdivided in five properties, assorted according to their usage. This so-called Realteilung is deployed both as a social and an economic tool. Specific residential typologies are separated and organized into a series of individual buildings. Within each building, identical units are simply stacked; this lack of internal complexity keeps construction costs—and thus apartments—affordable. At the same time, the homogeneity within each building meets the heterogeneity of the entire complex on the streets.

This results in an urban complexity exemplified by the ground floor. It features 42 doors, providing access for residents and a cocktail of public functions. This sparking potential exchanges within the city; interactions are an instrument of tolerance. This street life is also diversified and organized through several tactics. Residential buildings are placed along the quieter Kastananienallee side of the development, while the hotel is placed on the much livelier Spielbudenplatz. To increase density and deal with zoning regulations, a new street is added to the site, greatly increasing the public perimeter of the block. Through an offsetting of the building mass at the street’s entrance, it creates a public space protected from the noise and reveling of the Reeperbahn. To this space, a collection of communal roofs, a shared courtyard, and a public balcony are added, completing an armada of places where the sub-cultures of St. Pauli, young creatives, hotel guests, residents of the apartments, families and the elderly can all mix and mingle.

Englische Linie

093 Loggiavelo Vehicle, 1st Prize, Westphalia 2012

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status: competition, 1st prize
program: regional marketing stand
location: various cities, Westphalia
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Matthias Hoffmann, Christiane Schmidt
structural engineer: Jürgen Bernhardt, Cologne
client: Regionale - Märkte in Südwestfalen
date: April 2012

A proper city has a marketplace, but when civic pride and prosperity allow it, a city affords itself a loggia. The city rises from the mundane to the sublime. It celebrates itself, urbs becomes civitas. A loggia is a universal building, where commerce, politics and culture meet. It embodies urban life.

The twelve historic marketplaces in South Westphalia are getting a common loggia: the Loggiavélo. It is vehicle-like building, driven from town to town by the twelve mayors of the participating municipalities. The mayors are ecological and sustainable motors, consuming not fossil fuels, but renewable raw materials. If a motor is prevented from riding by important appointments, they can be replaced by an equally environmentally friendly representative.

The journey from town to town, powered by the physical strength of the citizens, is an indispensable part of the Loggiavélo. This is where the mayors get closer, where cohesion is tested, where a community is born. A bond is formed between the twelve cities, fortified along the way by picnics in the beautiful South Westphalian landscape.Through sweat and toil, the legend of the muscle-powered community town hall is born.

When the Loggiavélo is not being used for locomotion, it stands in the marketplaces of the participating communities. It stands directly on the pavement, a neutral space for all urban functions. Music can be played here, brochures can be distributed, and people can fortify themselves with a pilsner. This is as much a place for historical speeches as it is for baked waffles; revolutions can start and cooking recipes can be exchanged.

Each of the twelve trolleys is equipped with luggage boxes, giving the Loggiavélo a total storage capacity of 450 liters. There is room for folding chairs, leaflets, electricity, computers, a music system, crockery and a waffle iron. Decorating the "frieze" of the loggia are the coats of arms of the participating municipalities. At night they glow, creating a beacon of civic pride.

The Loggiavélo is a vehicle of lightweight construction, aerodynamics and innovative technology, demonstrating the technological expertise of the South Westphalia region. The welded aluminum lattice tube frame of the Loggiavélo is a weight-optimized space frame; the wall and roof are covered with a printed Dyneema fiber-reinforced foil laminate. The sides are perforated to reduce the area exposed to wind, and all parts are sewn together to be waterproof.

To support the mayoral forces over the breathtaking topography of the Sauerland, the mechanical crank drive is electrically amplified by 250 watt Bosch center motors. High performance batteries can be charged by recuperation. The Loggia receives steering through a "drive by wire" system, operated by the front left driver. This system and electronically controls all wheels individually. Similar to a tank, the Loggiavélo steers by accelerating or decelerating the electric motors on the two sides of the vehicle in opposite directions, and braked with synchronized hydraulic disc brakes.

Englische Linie

209 Liebig Höfe Competition, Honourable Mention, Aachen 2023 – BeL & studio erde

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status: urban design competition
program: multi-use fabrication and cultural complex
location: Aachen
team BeL: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Christian Kühnle, Alina Uhlenbrock, Finn Marcelli
team studio erde: Tim Krüger, Marcel Tröger, Violeta Burckhardt
client: City of Aachen
date: July 2023

The four large halls currently stand on the large gravel car park of the future Liebig Höfe. These halls alone do not succeed in forming an ensemble. If you enter one of the halls, this changes; the rooms have a strong character and the atmosphere is formed by the architecture. The placement of two further strong forms changes the cohesion of the Liebig Höfe: the six commercial buildings now build a clear ensemble which stands on a condensed, undulating ground-plane. From the centre of the ensemble, one sees all the buildings in their own way. The new buildings are positioned and designed such that their façades face the large open space in the middle, forming entrance spaces on each side. The Liebig Höfe maintains the character of an ensemble programmatically with a diverse mixture of uses. The two new buildings strengthen the productive everyday life of the area, complementing the existing commercial and leisure uses throughout the week and during the day. The Liebig Höfe will become a diverse, inclusive, low-threshold, ecologically high-quality, productive and lively neighbourhood.

Englische Linie

178 Siedlung Rotbuch Competition, Zürich 2020 – BeL & Marco Merz Marion Clauss

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status: competition
program: housing
location: Zürich - Unterstrass
team BeL: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Julia Kaulen, Leander Lentner with Marco Merz, Marion Clauss, Olivia Schmidt
client: Stiftung Einfach Wohnen
date: December 2020

The new Rotbuch-settlement is composed of an unequal double; two house ‚characters‘ that complement the colorful image of the neighborhood.

The larger, angled townhouse is oriented towards the street and forms a generous green corner against the intersection, while the smaller garden-house joins the group of second-row-houses placed in the topography. Together, these characters mediate between the scales of the surroundings, continue the open building structure and seek a self-evident presence in the midst of the beautiful vegetation.

The townhouse is developed as a dense package of rooms with common spaces of various scale and use. Floor communities of different micro apartment sizes (1-, 2-, and 3-rooms), intentionally located next to each other create mixed-age, mixed-living-model communities around South-facing, shared living rooms. The living spaces emerge from within the structure of the building; open spaces supplemented only by the adjoining smart-closet bathrooms.

The garden-house leaves space for the large existing Larch and has a clear, simple structure and layout. Kindergarten and Day-care share the first floor along the garden with morning sun, while above are two maisonette-cluster apartments with a communal terrace.

The heart of the new ensemble is the collective courtyard between the two buildings. High-crowned trees shade the gravel square. Connecting the two access roads, it offers space for communal activities and meetings, becoming the center of gravity for the settlement.

Englische Linie

155 Bergedorf-West Urban and Architectural Concept Development, Hamburg-Bergedorf 2019

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status: workshop
program: densification, housing, mobility hubs, retail, offices, workshops, gardens
location: Hamburg-Bergedorf
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Alina Uhlenbrock, Mariel Kaiser-Crompton 
client: Gemeinnützige Baugenossenschaft Bergedorf-Bille eG, Behörde für Stadtentwicklung und Wohnen, Amt für Landesplanung und Stadtentwicklung, Bezirksamt Hamburg-Bergedorf
date: June 2019

After years of consolidation on the inner edge of Hamburg's periphery, 16,000 new neighbors are expected in Bergedorf-West. This densified, new charged Bergedorf is investigated through parameters given by the existing urban-suburban structure.

The existing indifferent spaces will be transformed into new urban spaces, each of which will exaggerate its specific qualities and connect to the others via a network of well-defined open spaces. The aim is to be both more differentiated and grander than before.

Four spatial figures reinforce the latent spatial configuration by means of new construction: These juxtapose spatial typologies from the city, suburbs and village. The space is not drowned in newness. Types are read from the existing spaces and inscribed more definitely, volumetrically. Each new word giving a fresh meaning to its context. Life in Bergedorf becomes at once more urban and more scenic.

Englische Linie

061 Eisenachstraße Conversion, Cologne 2009

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status: completed
program: conversion of a terrace house
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Wiebke Schlüter, Wolfgang Zeh
net floor area: 150 m2
client: N.N.
cost: 150.000 €
structural engineer: Jürgen Bernhardt, Cologne
date: May 2009

The garden city estate of the Köln-Nippeser Bau- und Spargenossenschaft on Eisenachstrasse is one of the oldest cooperative housing estates in Cologne. Next to the large Nippes railroad repair works, the architect Heinrich Krings built around 60 inexpensive terraced houses for railroad workers' families between 1903 and 1905. The settlement won the gold medal for floor plan design at the 1900 World's Fair in Paris. As the last of the settlement houses to retain both street and garden-side facades, House number 38 is now listed for protection. The house suffered the misfortune of a lovelessly executed 90s renovation: three bathrooms were installed, rooms were divided, textured wallpaper and diagonally laid floor tiles covered the simple but robust original materials. By the time the new owners—a family with two children—purchased the house, this renovation had already worn out, but due to very high real estate prices, the remodeling budget was extremely limited.

For the new residents, the three separate units crammed into the existing building were re-integrated with selective interventions. The formerly semi-public stairwell was connected to the adjacent living and dining rooms, the kitchen was relocated to the street side, and the entrance hallway was demolished. A functional wall with integrated storage, work desk and through-way separates the kitchen from the newly created entrance hall. The dining room was given a door to the garden, and a fireplace area connects the dining room to the staircase. On the first floor, the demolition of the bathrooms made it possible to create space for a large living room adjacent to the children's rooms while the master bedroom with dressing room and a large family bathroom inhabit the second floor.

The entire house was remodeled with a dual strategy of brutalization and refinement. The new state is composed of the exposed fragments of all the previous ones: the visible shell of 1903, the framed extension of 1905, first improvements of the 50s, parts of the renovation of the 90s and contemporary interventions. All fragments are connected by a layer of beige paint, graduating their differences. The inset reading nook, fireplace bench, pass-through storage wall and shower niche, complete the programmatic expansion of the house. These new interventions follow the so-called ‘dental filling’ tactic: they fit seamlessly into existing conditions while revealing their independence materially.

Englische Linie

117 Clouth Housing Competition, Cologne 2015

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status: competition
program: housing
location: Clouth urban re-development Nippes, Cologne
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Matthias Hoffmann, Christiane Schmidt, Wolfgang Zeh
client: Wüstenrot Haus und Städtebau GmbH
date: May 2015

Ja, das möchste: Eine Villa im Grünen mit großer Terrasse,
vorn die Ostsee, hinten die Friedrichstraße;
mit schöner Aussicht, ländlich-mondän,
vom Badezimmer ist die Zugspitze zu sehn -
aber abends zum Kino hast Dus nicht weit.

(aus Theobald Tiger alias Kurt Tucholsky, Das Ideal, Berliner Illustrierte Zeitung 31.7.27)

To the north lies the urban street; to the south, a garden within nature. Here, one finds conditions out of Tucholski's "The Ideal."

The transition from the private to communal areas is finely graded, inviting contact between neighbors. To create a semi-public space along the facade, the ground floor moves back slightly. Each entrance hall is flanked by a finely tiled bench, helping the house to participate in the life of the sidewalk. The two-side oriented apartments have a continuous window strip towards the urban side, where a small balcony enables a connection, while a pergola creates balconies and loggias for all apartments along the garden side.

The building offers a variety of housing, from 2 to 5 ½ room apartments. These are distributed in a balanced mixture over all floors and provide for a wide range of living needs at various scales. The residents can use the floor plan flexibly; small spaces are arranged around a neutral distributor space, which can be both kitchen and living room. In the apartments from 2 ½ rooms or more, the user can decide freely about having a bedroom to the street or towards the garden. Some large apartments can be divided. Due to the flexibility of the ground plans, many alternative housing forms--such as cooperative housing, live/work housing or multi-generational living--are possible under one roof.

 

Englische Linie

081 Kleines Haus Blau Conversion, Hürth 2012

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status: completed
program: conversion and extension of a single-family house
location: Hürth
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Wiebke Schlüter, Christiane Schmidt
structural engineer: Fritz Münster, Frechen
clients: Sirit and Dirk Breuer
area:136 m2 plus 37 m2 attic
costs: 230.000 €
completion: May 2012

LBS-Preis Das Goldene Haus 2013
Houses of the Year 2013, Shortlist
Kölner Architekturpreis 2014
Architekturpreis NRW 2015
BDA-Architekturpreis Nike 2016

After the purchase of a small settler’s house from the 1950s, there was not much money left for a young family to build themselves a home. The decision was therefore made to refurbish and extend the existing house rather than rebuild it, saving not only money but also the material and energy conserved in the existing structure. The settler’s house is treated as raw structure into which the new is fitted, tuning up the typology, energy use, and accessibility of the house.

The suburban house—its spatial qualities having blurred, its references to history and context gone dim—is brought back to its origins and transformed into architecture. The three stories of the house are differentiated and formed through three different spatial concepts: A lengthwise directed living space on the ground floor, separate rooms circulating around a central access area on the first floor, and an open space concept in the attic.

The load-bearing walls are retained, while the different spatial concepts are introduced into the structure. The new lengthwise directed rooms on the ground floor connect front yard and garden, through the living space. Spacious double doors in the cross-direction link the new terraces on the sides of the house to both living room and kitchen. The new staircase is relocated on the outside of the house, connecting ground and first floor without disrupting the open character of the living-space. The four rooms of the first floor become individual characters—morning, day, evening and the north/garden room—through single windows, all facing a different direction. The attic bares the possibility of being buildout into an open space bedroom, arranged around a well-positioned bath box.

The small house stays small. It grows in length by 2.20m and in space from 118 to 152 m2. The extension rests on the foundations of the former terraces and is built in a light steel construction fitted with wooden walls. The new, insulated rafter-roof connects both parts of the house. The outside walls of the existing structure are insulated and plastered. While the different constructions and materials differentiate the new and the old are inside and out, the overall coloring of the walls keeps this effect subtle.

 

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125 Euroforum Competition, Special Prize: Façade, Cologne 2016

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status: competition. special prize façade
program: housing, workshops, retail
location: Mülheim, Cologne
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Christiane Schmidt, Matthias Hoffmann, Michel Kleinbrahm, Gina Rauschtenberger, Leonard Palm, Wolfgang Zeh
client: Euroforum Nord GmbH & Co. KG
date: January 2016

The two solitary structures--containing a total of 350 dwellings--inherit their scale, and many of their characteristics, from the industrial architecture of the neighborhood’s past. They maintain a strict structure in their construction and design; the repetition of rational elements lending a calm, impassive presence to the simple building volumes.

The urban outdoor space is diverse and lively. Ground-level residential studios strengthen the creative potential of the area through the mixture of living and working. The urban exteriors stand in contrast to the paradisiac shared interiors, which also offer a habitat for animals and plants. All apartments have at least two types of light and views; looking out, the space is lively and urban, while looking in, it is tranquil and green.

The clear separation of the outside and the inside is reflected in the design of the façades. The street-side façades are clad with prefabricated concrete. While their horizontal structure is homogeneous with soft repetitions, the individual levels differ significantly from one another. This vertical differentiation creates a sculptural relief with diverse and invigorating shadows. In the courtyards, volumes are projected to maximize the surface of the block. The façades are thus uniformly designed as wooden elements; their warm and simple forms adding to the peaceful character of the courtyards.

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074 van Dyck Coffee Roastery, Cologne 2010 – BeL & nondesign

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status: completed
program: coffee roastery
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Wolfgang Zeh
brand design: nondesign, Jörg Waschat
cost: 150.000,- €
net floor area: 185 m2
completion: July 2010

AIT-Award 2012

The van Dyck roasting plant is located at Körnerstraße 43 in Cologne-Ehrenfeld, a district characterized by its development during the industrial revolution. Its dense, orthogonal street network is lined by Rhenish three-window houses. Workers and petty bourgeois lived here, while in the block interiors, artisanal businesses and companies such as Audi, 4711, Helios, Herbrand and the chocolate factory Kwatta maintained production facilities. Since the Second World War, many immigrant workers moved to neighborhood, and recent development has been characterized by gentrification. While Ehrenfeld's industrial and artisanal importance is steadily declining, the gastronomic offer is steadily growing.

The design concept of the newly founded coffee roastery Van Dyck hearkens back to the industrial founding of the neighborhood without nostalgia. The technical production processes of a coffee roaster become the central design element; the experience of production becomes a gastronomic idea. With the roasting machine as a tabernacle in the visual axis of the room and the packing table serving as connecting element to the shop window, the guests participate intensively in the production of the coffee. The visit becomes a tasting; coffee and food are served at the packing table. The privilege of participating in the roasters' lunch break—behind the scenes of a legendary production plant—determines the perception of van Dyck.

An automotive enthusiast's greatest happiness is a visit to the "hallowed halls," the production facilities of his beloved make. Coffee lovers worldwide can now enjoy daily van Dyck coffee on Körnerstrasse.

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194 Post-/VoBa Areal Competition, Honourable Mention, Sindelfingen 2022 – BeL & Molestina & studio grüngrau

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status: urban design competition
program: multi-use community and cultural centre
location: Sindelfingen
team BeL: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Amelie Kulassek, Alina Uhlenbrock, Tobias Schwuchow
team Molestina: Juan Pablo Molestina, Steffen Schmidt, Julia Deventer
team grüngrau: Thomas Fenner, Binyang Xie
client: City of Sindelfingen
date: April 2022

Diagrammatically formulated, this solitaire bundles the entire interior program along Mercedes Street and raises it, thus obtaining a coherent, permeable green space which connects all adjacent streets. This minimizes pavement and maximizes potential areas for vegetation and social interaction. The building is a 38.5m high and 25.4m deep, functional hybrid. It is set back towards Mercedesstraße, tangent to the property line at Gartenstraße and at Poststraße it keeps maximum distance to the opposite development; a respectful neighbour. As a high point, the building is clearly perceptible from every side due to its precise positioning, without triggering conflicts with the buildings opposite. On the contrary, it creates new urban contexts and gives expression to its public purpose.
 
The entire area lies at the center of a "shared space" formed by the surrounding streets of Mercedesstrasse/Gartenstrasse/Unter Torgasse and Poststrasse. The boundaries of this urban space are fluid, pedestrians and cyclists enjoy absolute priority, and the speed of all vehicles is reduced to a minimum.
 
The 5.8m high first floor of the 11-storey structure has a special significance. Its structural footprint is minimal and its height maximal to allow permeability in all directions. Each side forms special subspaces; the quiet entrance hall of the apartments is located on Poststrasse, while the more public Mercedesstraße is lined by a colonnade with accompanying trees. Here, tables of the café of the Kultur- und Bürger*innenzentrum can be placed in the morning sun. This space leads southwards into the urban loggia, where a cantilever created by the sloped seating of the civic hall above forms a public, covered outdoor space. In addition to its function as the entrance area of the cultural and civic centre, this space doubles as a lively forum for cultural and social activities at the intersection of Mercedesstrasse and Gartenstrasse. To the West, between the building and Unterer Torgasse, the public green space provides shade, calm and room to relax.

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035 Kaufhaus Breuer Conversion, Eschweiler 2006

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status: completed
program: conversion of a department store into apartments and offices
location: Grabenstraße 38, 52249 Eschweiler
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Eveline Jürgens, Thomas Schneider
net floor area: 1.465 m2
cost: 1.200.000 €
client: Anna Maria und Andrea Breuer, Cologne
structural engineer: Jürgen Bernhardt, Cologne
HVACR: energieplan, Cologne
date: June 2006

Eschweiler Architekturpreis 2007
BDA Preis Aachen 2007
Architekturpreis NRW Auszeichnung 2007
NRW wohnt! Wohnen an ungewöhnlichen Orten Preis 2008
Deutscher Bauherrenpreis 2009
BDA Preis Nike für besonderes soziales Engagement, Shortlist

After converting the 1950's department store into a modern residential and commercial building the only remaining retail spaces were located on the ground floor. The first floor is home to a public recreational room where children whose parents are shopping can be cared for by senior citizens; this space can also be reconfigured to form an office or a surgery. The target groups for the two residential floors are elderly and handicapped people who live in the city and wish to enjoy the advantages of unassisted living.

In the second and third floors there are eight apartments in all, which can be used individually or as a residential cooperative. In order to retain the openness of the former department store, the floor plans are divided only by the addition of core sanitary modules and moveable wall elements. Each apartment has a fully-glazed inner courtyard. The composite thermal insulation system, necessary to keep energy levels low, includes a newly developed light-plaster, which responds to sunlight with the aid of inset glass beads.

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144 Radladen Staub & Teer Bikeshop, Cologne 2018

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status: completed
program: bike shop
location: Severinstraße 49, Cologne
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Christian Kühnle
costs: 50.000 €
net floor area: 105 m2
completion: October 2018

Verzinkerpreis 2019, honorable mention: sustainability 

The staub&teer bike shop in Cologne is a sustainable project. The salesroom for gravel bikes and accessories of a Cologne bike factory had a fixed budget of €50,000 for 100 m2 of space. For this, the complete drywall construction, the electrical, lighting and sanitary installations, painting work and the sales equipment were to be carried out. The shop - perfectly located in the Roman Cardo street - had no spatial or atmospheric qualities, so only a strong overhaul of the space would make the shop a place of commerce.

The spatial or atmospheric upgrading of the room is achieved by installing a construction system from an alien context - a ready-made. The galvanized EURO formwork construction system serves as a wall, room divider, paneling, door, counter and shelf, and can be deconstructed without leaving any residue. The differently joined modular elements, fixed by means of clamps, form a sequence of rooms: the vestibule, the counter space, the cabinet of curiosities and the bicycle gallery are lined up, one after another.

The construction system was built by the shop operators themselves in 5 days, and fulfills the individual functions through various modifications. Perforated or galvanized steel sheets are set with magnets; flush with the outside as a presentation surface or flush with the inside as shelf backing. As bicycle holders, bent anchor rods were inserted into the anchor nuts inherent in the system. As product holders, stock insert-able hooks were inserted into the perforated panels. The universal formwork, purchased for 30.000 €, required no modification, and can thus be resold after a possible dismantling.

Since opening, the bike shop has become a social meeting place—given its universality and the energy of the operators—serving this role in addition to that of a sales room: https://www.instagram.com/staubundteer/

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161 Am Mühlkanal Urban Design Workshop, Salach 2019

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status: urban development workshop
program: conversion, housing, workshops, offices, retail, public spaces
location: Salach
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Mariel Kaiser-Crompton, Hannah Rudolph
client: Gemeinde Salach, IBA-GmbH StadtRegion Stuttgart
date: December 2019

With the Mühlkanal quarter, Salach is developing a unique piece of the city and a special piece of the landscape. The space between the railway and the river Fils - both the infrastructural elements which have allowed the city to grow - is now itself joining that city. The industrial ensemble and the floodplain thus emerge as charged urban spaces. The 1,000 employees of the Schachenmayr, Mann & Cie company almost 100 years ago will now become approx. 1,000 people (approx. 700 residents, 300 jobs) who live and work in the Mühlkanal quarter.

The conversion and extension of the protected buildings establish an ensemble, both culturally and socially outstanding. The four buildings of industrial culture - each exemplary of the techniques, structure and design of its time - are carefully converted and minimally supplemented. These structures are only suitable for living in a few areas, and thus require a special programmatic mix, developed in relation to each structure. Each of the four buildings receives a loose focus: work/studio space, small-scale production shops, a market/event hall and culture/education. In the existing buildings, people continue to produce and work, but also research, trade, educate themselves, meet and relax. To create an urban fabric, however, more is needed; the generous areas for working are supplemented by diverse typologies for living.

The new buildings are added to the existing ones as new rooms in a spatial sequence; a continuation of the sites industrial logic. The saw tooth halls are connected to the factory building via the workshop, offering expandable residential studios of various sizes on two double floors and a building of cluster apartments. The long row of three wool-sorting buildings to the north is extended by one building. The resulting comb-like structure functions as mobility house for cars and bicycles, and features South-facing terraced apartments, forming the Northern edge of a lively residential street. The Southern edge is then created by three groups of back-to-back row houses. These row houses are arranged according to size, creating small plazas along the street to the north before condensing into residential paths leading southward into the landscape. Flanking these paths, small residential towers frame views toward the river. One step over the new mill canal and you are standing in the wild river landscape along the Fils. New gardens and meadows can be found here, seating steps can be discovered along the bank, and in the thicket of the otherwise inaccessible biotope, one finds the secluded refurbished Hattie-Barreis hut, now a picturesque beer garden.

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103 Briesestraße Conversion, Berlin 2013

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status: project
program: low cost housing, conversion of a parking garage into housing
location: Briesestraße, Berlin
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Matthias Hoffmann, Aaron Schirrmann, Christiane Schmidt, Wolfgang Zeh
structural engineer: Jürgen Bernhardt, Cologne
client: Senatsbaudirektion Berlin, Stadt und Land Wohnungsbau-Gesellschaft, Berlin
date: December 2013

The Conversion of the Breisestraße Car Park – A model for Berlin

The conversion of a multi-story car park cautiously densifies the neighborhood with minimal capital, offering room for a community of 91 people. Construction costs of 828 € / m2 NF allow the tenant to pay a monthly rent of only 6.50 € / m2, ensuring equitable housing opportunities. The project is a model for Berlin; the Briesestraße Car Park serves as prototypical scheme, applicable to all d'Humpy system car parks.

All measures to improve the substance of the car park are carried out following the principle of least intervention. The removal of prefabricated ceiling elements enables light to flood in from above into private courtyards, allowing all flats to receive light from two sides. With minimal effort, the car park is thus transformed into a series of courtyard houses, each offering a range of apartment types formed within the ceiling panel grid.

A differentiated open walkway winds itself as a Rue Intérieure through the house with continuous natural light and visual connection to the outside world. Not only does this street provide bike, skateboard and scooter-friendly entry to the interior private courtyard houses, but it enables communal occupation, appropriation and adaptation through a series of common areas: guest rooms, workshops, kiosks, bike rooms, etc. After beginning near the multi-purpose hall on the ground floor, the Rue Intérieure, winds its way up the ramps through the building, culminating in the in the roof terrace, where residents can meet, play, relax and grill.

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045 Sparda Bank Competition, Bonn 2007

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status: competition
program: bank
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Thomas Schneider
gross floor area: 1.034 m2
cost: 2.648.632,00 €
client: Sparda-Bank West
structural engineer: Jürgen Bernhardt, Cologne
date: January 2007

The scheme is based on Edward T. Halls theory of proxemics, a study on the individual's need for personal space. To guarantee privacy within an open space, confidential conversations need to be protected by minimum distances.
The proposal embraces the conflicting requirements of openness and privacy and encourages customers to ascend to the upper floors.

A low-ceilinged Rustico welcomes the customer on street level. The ground floor is open to the public 24 hours a day and houses several ATMs. During business hours an extra-wide spiral staircase opens to a spacious Piano Nobile. The structural system of the building consists of 13 slim columns and 5 waffle floor slabs. A service core contains ATMs, a staircase and an elevator.

Due to the cooperative heritage of the Sparda Bank the project indulges in humbleness.

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079 Gärtnerhof Overmeyer Organic Farm, Seevetal 2014 – BeL & urban catalyst studio

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status: completed
program: organic farm with barn, stables, farmstead and farm shop
location: Seevetal
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Klaus Overmeyer, Maike Basista, Matthias Hoffmann, Luc Knödler, Philipp Schläger, Christiane Schmidt, Wolfgang Zeh
structural engineer: Jürgen Bernhardt, Cologne
area: 2000 m2, 10 ha
clients: Kerstin & Uli Overmeyer, Seevetal
costs: 2.000.000 €
completion: March 2014

Agricultural engineers Ulrich and Kerstin Overmeyer have built a new biodynamic farm with a farm store, residential building, stable and barn on a ten-hectare plot in Emmelndorf. In front of the organic market garden on Emmelndorfer Straße, a large scattered fruit meadow and a wetland biotope have been created. "We want to make primary production tangible and make shopping a direct sensory experience," says Kerstin Overmeyer, explaining the concept. "We want to make sustainable management in harmony with nature tangible. Anyone who comes to us should immediately be immersed in our agriculture," adds her husband Uli Overmeyer.

The courtyard is composed by individual volumes, all with views of the garden landscape. The large volumes are constructed of timber and are themselves composed of smaller volumes with thresholds, intermediate and partial spaces that take up references to the neighboring buildings. The overall structure of Gärtnerhof becomes smaller and larger simultaniously. In the patchwork of facades there are different veneers made of re-used bricks. The spaces all communicate with one another across the yard; all annexable according to the seasonal and momentary needs of the residents and operators.

The Gärtnerhof is a cross between a garden and a farm; a charged island in the landscape. The garden is compaction, in the yard the garden experience is opened up and thus further condensed; it is a space of rural conjestion. The farm is so compact that life and work are immediately perceptible, that the operational processes are optimized. The farm has a closed energy cycle. Animals, houses, equipment, fruit, vegetables and people coexist in a dynamic, cultivated order, to the rhythm of the seasons, in accord with the laws of nature.

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122 NEUBAU 15th Architecture Biennale, Venice 2016

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status: completed
program: cities of assembly
location: Arsenale, Venice
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Michel Kleinbrahm, Matthias Hoffmann, Christiane Schmidt, Gina Rauschtenberger, Leonard Palm, Mariel Kaiser-Crompton, Alia Mortada, Julia Kaulen, Wolfgang Zeh, Achim Nagel, Roman Krükel, Paula Frasch, Jonas Läufer, Sofya Panova, Christian Kühnle, Moritz Dornseifer, Mihails Staluns, David Taffner, Yasemin Bulut, Stefanie Oßenkamp, Nicola Schmalt, Thomas Bohne, Philipp Kentgens, Laura Fuchs, Lara Fieguth, Norman Schroeder, Katja Göser, Judith Neyses, Amelie Kulassek, Sinam Hawro Yakoob, Kaja Gerstein, Johanna Willert, Valentin Lindenlauf, Henriette Riecke, Eva Neumann, Tom Walther, Jan Rothstein, Lavinia Hoeck, Nina Ismar, Ruslan Dimov, Tobias Fink, Anton Schwingen, Franz Klein-Wiele, Janina Pahlke, Veit Landwehr, Tom May, Jürgen Bernhardt, Edith Bernhardt, Peter Schomann, Guillaume Deforet, Bernhard Stratmann, Klaus-Dieter Münchhofen, James Roderick O'Donovan, Lilith Bernhardt


with the support of: PRIMUS developments GmbH, Freie und Hansestadt Hamburg, IBA Hamburg GmbH, Stadt München, Bauwelt Delmes Heitmann, Peter Behrens School of Arts, RWTH Aachen University, Preisser, Dow International, Schuckertz Modellbau, Bundesarchiv, Daniela Westphal-Reichow, Georg Westermann Verlag, Verlag Ernst Wasmuth
client: la Biennale di Venezia
date: May 2016

NEUBAU - on Königsberger Straße and Aleppoer Weg

Germany is an immigration country, in the metropolitan regions there is a housing shortage. By 2026 this shortage will amount to around four million affordable dwellings. In a large model NEUBAU shows four speculative self-build cities which represent a further development of the project Grundbau und Siedler that was implemented at the IBA in Hamburg. A comparison to the major reconstruction work after 1945 reveals similarities and differences over a period of ten years. We call the urban districts "city of assembly". They are co-productions; between the poles of self-determination and planning a wide variety of spaces is developed for community, production, trade, and private use. 50% of the residents have a migration background, these are districts for everyone.

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150 Viererfeld Competition, Bern 2018 – BeL & Christ und Gantenbein & Maurus Schifferli & Prof. Dr. Christian Schmid

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status: competition
program: housing
location: Bern
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Mariel Kaiser-Crompton, Laura Fuchs, Malte Wilms, Alina Uhlenbrock, Christiane Schmidt
team Christ & Gantenbein: Emanuel Christ, Christoph Gantenbein, Cloé Gattigo
team Maurus Schifferli: Maurus Schifferli, Melina Kistani
sociologist: Prof. Dr. Christian Schmid
client: City of Bern
date: October 2018

A Bernese Quarter

The new urban quarter on Viererfeld is being created in synergetic relation to the surrounding scenery - the Aare slope, the historic Enge promenade and the Bremgarten forest. In interpretation of the cinematic method "splitscreen," one half of the space is cast as landscape, the other half as urban. These two large figures—the city block and the city park—take up the scale of the perimeter and reinforce its magnificence with grand gestures. The city block is a typologically pure form wherein individual houses subordinate themselves to the whole, resulting in a large communal interior framed by private flats. The city park reinterprets this principle with intensive edge use and a coherent, open center. Both large figures thus oscillate between a monumental grandeur and small-scale spaces.

The linearity of Bern’s old town is continued by the city block and elevated into a principle of spatial experience. The block’s two long fronts—one facing the promenade and the other the park—locate the required density at the edge, thus leaving the largest possible space in the interior undeveloped. The continuity of the exterior co-exists with interior heterogeneity through parceling; the plot is here understood not only as a fundamental economic principle but also as a formative one. Plots allow for the realization of different house sizes (small/medium/large/very large) and economic models (building group/cooperative housing/ pension funds), creating both consistency and adaptability. This system maintains a calm exterior, while allowing the interior to develop its own qualities. It becomes a sort of ‘outside’ in its own rite; its own biotope—socially and ecologically held together by its size and character. Public paths traverse the courtyard, each breaking the perimeter at two joints—where visibility and connectivity concentrate public services—and forming three yards within the interior.

These paths connect the linear elements of promenade and block to the equally long city park. Following Camillo Sitte’s theories of irregular urban space, generous street square and park spaces are experienced in sequence, lending the quarter a heterogeneous, green, urban character. Criteria of perception and use thus produce the new Viererfeldpark, which consists of an intensively used edge and open inner commons. The spatial framework of the park is built of fine paths and high hedges, displaying a wide array of public uses along the periphery, while giving glimpses into the expansive interior. The hedges form commons of round cells aligned in a diagonal enfilade. This arrangement frames strong individual spaces, while the park’s impressive size remains visible along the axis. The circular path system circumnavigates the subspaces creating long movements, and connects the commons to the forest to the East and the new quarter to the West. Three tall houses are placed amongst the gardens to the South, accentuating the flowing space of the commons and completing an ensemble of spaces punctuated by alpine views and large oak trees.

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132 Bremsstraße Housing, Cologne 2018

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program: housing, day-care center
location: Cologne
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Michel Kleinbrahm, Mariel Kaiser-Crompton, Laura Fuchs, David Leber, Jakob Wolters, Christiane Schmidt
date: May 2018

The Zollstock neighborhood in Cologne contains an array of different functions and building typologies. In the site’s immediate vicinity, there is a heterogeneous mixture of 3 to 4-storey perimeter block buildings, terraced buildings, free-standing 8 to 12-storey high-rise buildings, and 1-storey commercial buildings. The block interiors are often built up with scattered low buildings of 1-3 stories and connected to the neighborhood’s streets with doors and passageways.

Responding to a desire for both order and diversity, the scheme is modeled after the Pallenberg housing estate in Cologne-Weidenpesch. Built in 1906, the estate is composed of buildings around a central park and, according to the garden city principle, featured a community center with a reading room and public baths. A gatehouse flanked by other buildings gives access to the central zone.

The new interpretation in Zollstock consists of a 7-story, 16-meter-deep gatehouse on Bremsstraße and a smaller, 4-story, 12.5-meter-deep gatehouse on Heinrich-Brüning-Straße. In between, a 4-story building with a day-care center at ground level encloses the outdoor central common space. This central outdoor space serves as access for the flats and the day-care center, the play area and opens a new pedestrian crossing between the two streets. The inner building encircles the yard with a series of delicate arcades, providing access to the apartments and bringing life into the yard throughout the day. Between the inner building and the interior edge of the block, residents enjoy private gardens and balconies, while to the East, the daycare center opens onto a more protected play yard.

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072 Grundbau und Siedler Self-Build Housing, IBA Hamburg 2013

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status: completed
program: self-build housing
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Christiane Schmidt, Wolfgang Zeh, Leonard Wertgen, Fréderic Schnee
structural engineer: Jürgen Bernhardt, Cologne
HVACR: Energie und Technik, Sittensen
client: Primus AG
gross floor area: 1.352 m2
cost: 1.200.000 €, 830 €/m2 BGF
completion: March 2013

Deutscher Architekturpreis 2013, honorable mention
Universal Design Award 2013 , Universal Design Consumer Favorite 2013

construction manual for settlers
>>> DOWNLOAD HERE


Grundbau und Siedler explores how lower income groups can become home owners. This project was originally developed in the framework of the IBA Hamburg 2013 for the urban district of Wilhelmsburg. The dominant typology in this area is the allotment garden hut, in the 1970s large social housing complexes were also erected there. Although the theme of these developments was "urbanity through density", they are neither densely built nor do they succeed in producing any sense of urbanity.

The project by BeL stretches the typology of the hut to multi-storey housing – a skeleton provides the basic frame, its different stories can be individually filled out, both spatially and over a period of time, by the residents themselves employing self-build methods. The future home-owners buy a package consisting of a plot within a basic, concrete-built skeleton, all the building materials needed to develop their plot, and a handbook giving detailed instructions on all the steps necessary for the development work.

In warmer climatic zones Le Corbusier's Domino House principle from 1914 has proved its value as a successful construction system for informal housing developments. Aashwa´i in Cairo, Polykatoikia in Athens, Gececondu in Istanbul, and Favela in Sao Paulo confirm the superiority of the Domino construction principle – and not just from the viewpoint of costs. It is a shelf that provides ideal conditions for a mix of functions; a surplus of space creates a flexible basis to be appropriated by future extensions, conversions and adaptations. The open basic structure allows flexibility over a long period of time.

Applying the Domino principle in Germany today requires specialized materials and details in order to satisfy the demands made by highly developed post-industrial societies regarding comfort, economy and ecology. The Grundbau or skeleton has a single staircase serving three units on each floor, the structure is five-storeys high and offers twelve sites for settlers. Each of the upper four stories has three units, whereas the ground floor contains the settlers' private workshops, car parking spaces, the public utilities connection room and the approach to the open staircase.

The settlers acquire a complete kit of building components to erect a typical settler's house. This kit contains all the construction material. A detailed handbook describes the steps that they can carry out themselves, as well as indicating those areas of work that must be approved by a specialist. The organization of the floor plans is independent of the load-bearing structure and the neighboring stories. All versions of the typical floor plan in the settlers' kit address different housing needs (the number of persons, lifestyle etc.) and changes of function over time (a growing family, the advent of old age, change of user). A set of functionally neutral spaces is offered with an abundant number of doors. Consequently, the users can employ whatever function they wish. All the rooms are connected to each other; each room has openings to its neighbors. The large number of doors allows the rooms to be grouped as required. For instance: one family may want a large bathroom with a view, whereas another may use this room as a child's bedroom. Each dwelling has two service shafts that are positioned at the intersection of the partition walls and can serve three rooms.

The settlers decide what the rooms will be used for. Flexibility results from use and not through adaptation. Functionally indeterminate spaces in a floor plan without corridors require the settlers to interpret and conquer their own space. In the 1:50 scale configuration model (contained in the building kit) the settlers can examine which ways of using the spaces work best for them. Those who wish so can ignore the recommendations and the material offered in the building kit and can improvise. Settlers can reject the guidelines within their own plot, everyone has the right to make their own mistakes and improvements. The Grundbau contains everything needed to build and operate a unit; the settlers can use the workshop spaces on the ground floor from day one and can run their own construction site from there. The Grundbau has railings making scaffolding unnecessary, the settlers can carry out their work from the 70-cm wide strip of balcony.

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004 Perimeter City Competition, Jarfälla 2001

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status: competition
program: low cost housing
location: Jarfälla, Sweden
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser
date: January 2001

The site is a typical Scandinavian landscape preserved by the oldest Swedish Airport.
Traditional Swedish farms blur the threshold between cultivated and uncultivated terrain.
Old Swedish Farms incorporate the seasonal climates into specific architectural elements.
Each dwelling has its own personal panorama created through the circular lots.
Half paved dirt roads allow circulation of pedestrians and access traffic.
A non-hierarchical distribution creates a hybrid landscape condition of scattered dwellings.
Multi-use appliances adapt to the seasonal program.
In winter use the functions contract to a minimum program of interiority.
In summer use the functions expand to a maximum program of exteriority.

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145 Gartenstadt Erfurt Competition, Erfurt 2018

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status: competition
program: housing
location: Erfurt
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Malte Wilms, Alina Uhlenbrock
client: KoWo Erfurt
date: February 2018

In the historic garden city, the residential courtyard is the spatial image used: buildings enclose a common space as a garden. In reference to this spatial image of social togetherness, a differentiated courtyard structure is created in Erfurt: individual buildings stand at the edge of the plot, leaving a common center free. The existing link between the Muskauer Platz neighborhood and the Gera floodplain is not cut off by the courtyard structure, but spatially charged. The openings between form transitions, from the residential area through the garden courtyard and into the Gera floodplain. The threshold spaces reference the gates of the historic garden city: four for foot and bike, one for foot, bike car, and fire brigade. In keeping with the courtyard type, all buildings are accessed from the garden, with additional entrances from the outside to avoid creating a backside.

The communal garden of approx. 3500 m² is used as a meeting point, offering not only a place to relax but also the opportunity to garden and harvest. The loose grove of fruit trees and the flowering meadows create a free, serene atmosphere. A garden house near the raised beds and the lawn creates a spatial anchor point, providing space for garden tools and movable furniture. Here, vegetables are cleaned, honey is extracted and juice is pressed together in autumn. The chosen plants attract insects and animals, thus reinforcing the character of the large, shared garden: consciously different from floodplain and actively cultivated by all 340 residents. 

To fulfill the systematization requirements of a garden city, the design consists of small series-buildings. While the outdoor space is a large form, the buildings are of medium size. In all five houses, the same flat types are grouped together; horizontally and—in the case of the larger ones, vertically—thus creating maximum repetition in the buildings. The garden houses are designed contextually; developed from the site, each with its own garden interpretation. The entire complex forms an encyclopedia of garden types and corresponding dwellings. The black pine house looks out into the forest and forms the main gateway to the courtyard. Bikes and cars are parked under the house, while the apartments above take on the quality of tree houses floating above the garden. To the North, staggered row houses feature extroverted gardens facing onto the floodplain, exemplifying private garden life. The conservatory house celebrates communal spaces with a framed roof terrace and a double facade. This envelope creates a buffer where exotic plants can grow year-round. The courtyard houses have the most radical reference to the garden, with living rooms at ground level, opening onto the introverted courtyard. Finally, the flower house crowns the yard. It is designed as a large cluster house of connectable individual flats, all with views into the park. The communal roof garden makes it a green beacon, while at the ground floor, a kiosk serves the park ice cream and lemonade.

Englische Linie

099 AL29UC Conversion, Cologne 2014

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status: completed
program: conversion of a 29th floor penthouse into a photographer's office
location: Cologne
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Conrad Kersting, Christiane Schmidt
structural engineer: Jürgen Bernhardt
client: private
date: September 2014

At 134m high, the Uni-Center in Cologne is one of the largest residential high-rises in Europe. In addition to 1000 apartments, it has several offices and service areas. One of these, the 250 m2 penthouse atop the lowest wing of the building (29 stories) had been divided into 5 office units. With the addition of a few structurally strategic elements, dividing walls could be removed, unifying the penthouse space. With the exception of the neutral gray bathroom and technical room, the office is now composed of a fully glazed large room with a single core of exposed concrete. The glass facade was completely replaced by energy-efficient elements and provided with a large sliding system which opens East onto the roof garden. 

The conversion deals with perspective as a symbolic form. An approximately 90 cm high platform takes up most of the space. Under the platform there is space for the large number of cables which dominated the room before the renovation; these are now combined with the existing core and hidden discretely behind the bookcases which run along the edge of the platform. This simple move divides the room into two spaces: a low-lying zone along the facade and a wide, open area above. Below is the library, storage, and tea kitchen, while above are the permanent workspaces, meeting tables and a sitting area. The floor of the platform is covered with a specially designed and manufactured carpet, which—in reference to oriental patterns—contains ornamental elements such as the floor plan of the Uni-Center, the coat of arms of the building owner’s birthplace, and maritime motifs from the Gaudi tile used in the tea kitchen.

In raising the floor 90 cm, a breathtaking panoramic view extends over the balustrade of the roof garden—at a considerable 115 m—to the horizon. The world is at your feet.

Englische Linie

163 Dragoner Areal Urban Development Workshop, Berlin 2020 – BeL, Robertneun & Studio Vulkan

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status: urban development workshop
program: multi-use: housing, ateliers, community areas, public open spaces, kindergarten, town hall, commercial
location: Berlin
team BeL: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Anna Bayer, Hannah Rudolph
team Robertneun: Nils Buschmann, Tom Friedrich, Maria Seidel, Max Mütsch, David Troost, Niklas Klein
team Studio Vulkan: Dominik Bückers, Alizée Bonnel, Valentin Keller, Johanna Joecker
client: City of Berlin
date: February 2020

The ‘Dragoner Areal’ inspires a strategy of preservation and continuation. Its spatial and atmospheric density, richness and diversity lend this strategy its starting point, goal and content. This diversity is a product of a duality: a friction between the site’s 19th century army barracks and the Wilhelminian urban texture which has grown up around them. In between the rigid geometry of the barracks and the amalgamated interior of the Berlin block, a disorderly, yet lively hinterland of subordinate outbuildings has developed. To create a truly mixed-use urban quarter, the integration of these existing commercial and cultural uses is paired with a clarification of the barracks’ inherent architectural characteristics. By taking up its already in-progress transformation, this monument of the past becomes the living heart of future development.

The frayed sequence of courtyards along the block interior are strengthened, capped or enlarged to form a series of more definite courtyards and living ensembles. Public functions are re-oriented or added—supporting and introducing block life—while the reclaimed order of the barracks’ structure introduces clear entrances, sightlines and throughways. This structure is therefore maintained, with special attention given to the re-fortification of the three traditionally open spaces: the central parade ground and the two practice fields. This is achieved not by reconstructing the missing wings and head buildings, but by replacing them with a diverse cast of more contemporary structures. Residents and users have then direct access two the two practice fields, which—restored to their original proportions—now serve as an urban garden and work yard, and the parade ground—now partially re-appropriated into a central plaza. 

Englische Linie

131.4 Quartier Spielbudenplatz: Subsidized Housing Competition, Hamburg 2016-2020 – BeL & NL Architects

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status: competition
program: subsidized housing
location: St. Pauli, Hamburg
team BeL: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Christiane Schmidt, Alia Mortada, Julia Kaulen, Michel Kleinbrahm, Jonas Läufer, Wolfgang Zeh
team NL: Kamiel Klaasse, Kirsten Hüsig, Laura Riano Lopez, Pieter Bannenberg, Guilia Pastore, Jasna Kajevic
structural engineer: Jürgen Bernhardt, Cologne
client: Bayerische Hausbau GmbH & Co. KG., Bezirksamt Hamburg Mitte
date: August 2016

Plot 4 is composed of two residential buildings facing onto the alleyway with access to the common courtyard. The first of these sits at the corner of the new alleyway and the ‘Kastanienallee’ along the South of the site. It is a two-volume ‘Doppelhaus’ composed of a Milanese-style corner building and residential tower. The second is a retirement community home which faces the alleyway with a series of ornamental balconies.

The two parts of the ‘Doppelhaus’ are offset by one stair landing, creating a split-level semi-detached house joined through an exterior security staircase. In the Milanese corner building, the lift leads directly to the arcade, which provides access to three 3.5-room flats. The flats have an open floor plan, allowing for various forms of cohabitation. The tower features three 1,5-room apartments per level, each have a 5 m2 loggia and deep-set windowsill with expansive views over the Hamburg harbor. These two communities come together at the roof garden of the corner house, which is accessible to all residents.

The five-story retirement home forms another unique community: four small flats per story share a common living room and a large balcony overlooking the alley. This creates social networking and exchange not only among the residents, but between the residents and the adjoining public space. The façade is horizontally structured, defined by precast concrete elements and 'tattooed' flower pots for flats and living rooms. The ground floor has a small shop and restaurant as flexible commercial space, further tying the building to the alleyway.

Englische Linie

131.2 Quartier Spielbudenplatz: Museum, Hostel Competition, Hamburg-St. Pauli 2016-2020 – BeL & NL Architects

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status: competition
program: museum, hostel
location: St. Pauli, Hamburg
team BeL: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Christiane Schmidt, Alia Mortada, Julia Kaulen, Michel Kleinbrahm, Jonas Läufer, Wolfgang Zeh
team NL: Kamiel Klaasse, Kirsten Hüsig, Laura Riano Lopez, Pieter Bannenberg, Guilia Pastore, Jasna Kajevic
structural engineer: Jürgen Bernhardt, Cologne
client: Bayerische Hausbau GmbH & Co. KG., Bezirksamt Hamburg Mitte
date: August 2016

The small Plot 2 features a compact, interconnected structure of communal cultural uses. Thus, the complex relationships of opening, demarcation, insight and separation give form to this urban building block. On Spielbudenplatz stands the small museum with a massive façade, crowned by a skate park. Its glass pedestal contains a café and a club, which extends into the basement. From here, a staircase connects the clubs concert space with the townhouse-style hostel next door.

The museum façade acts as a sound barrier, protecting the alley behind and the building itself from the noise of Spielbudenplatz. Operable windows are hidden in the trapezoids of the soundproof wall, and skylights are concealed in the volcanoes of the skate park. A bridge spans the alley, connecting the skate park to the adjacent 3D building of Plot 1. Here skaters spend the afternoon in the evening sun, enjoying the view over the Reeperbahn while a service entrance from the hostel supplies drinks.

The club has two function rooms: a day club on the level of Spielbudenplatz with a stage in the shop window and a subterranean club with a basilica-like layout under the alley. You descend into the club via a central staircase - with cloakroom and box office in what would be the organ loft. From the club, a service staircase leads up to the hostel, where visiting performers can lodge. The hostel is a narrow, eight-story townhouse on the alley with three small double rooms and a slightly larger private room on each floor. The rooms face the alley, each with a façade basket for airing clothes and storing travellers' belongings. A two-story restaurant, which also serves as the reception, opens onto the alley. Here, guests can spend their days and evenings before ascending to their rooms.

Englische Linie

177 Zukunft Leonhardsvorstadt Urban Planning Game, Stuttgart 2021 – BeL & Studio Malta

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status: project
program: participatory design game for the IBA’27 StadtRegion Stuttgart, example for a good communal life (pre-planning)
location: Leonhardsvorstadt, Stuttgart
team BeL: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Laura Fuchs, Leander Lentner
team Studio Malta: Marta Toscano, Aaron Schirrmann, Aida Nejad and team Belius: Andreas Foidl, Andreas Krüger
client: IBA’27 StadtRegion Stuttgart
date: August 2020- Oktober 2020

Many changes are in store for Leonhardsvorstadt. The two parking garages are to be replaced by new buildings. New apartments can be built; a new center can emerge with spaces for the community and for the neighborhood, with a film and media house creating a cultural focus point for the city.
The entire Leonhardsvorstadt should benefit from this tailwind: the residents, those who work and shop here, the guests, the young and the old, but before the planning of the Neue Mitte begins with a competition, the people in the neighborhood are being asked for their input. What do they hope for the future, how do they imagine living, working, staying in Leonhardsvorstadt?
Bring your ideas, tell us about the history of this special part of Stuttgart. Let us know what you like about the neighborhood, what you miss, what you like to do here and what you would like to do here. Play through with us what the Leonhardsvorstadt could become.
With a mixture of analog and digital we want to shape the future together.

zukunft-leonhardsvorstadt.de

Englische Linie

135 Schloss Türnich Competition, Masterplan Castle, Grounds and Village, Türnich 2017 – BeL & baukuh & smeets

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status: competition
program: permaculture farm, farm shop, hotel, lecture rooms, co-working, office, restaurants, workshops, apartments, community housing, gardens
location: Türnich
team BeL: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Michel Kleinbrahm, Jakob Wolters
team baukuh: Pier Paolo Tamburelli, Andrea Zanderigo, Paula Frasch, Chiara Catapano
team smeets: Jan Peter Stiller
client: city of Kerpen, Count and family of Hoensbroech
date: February 2017

Schloss Türnich is a unique spatial structure made from architectural and landscape elements. Together, they form a system of particular pieces: the castle, the moat, the French garden, the English landscape park, the mill, the forrest, the avenue and the agricultural land. The elements are not necessarily connected to each other and old connections are often interrupted by new elements.

This generous distribution of partially disjointed scenes - a recurring phenomenon throughout the history of the castle - is the main feature of the situation. The changes in the castle complex should therefore do justice to the special nature of the place. The connection between the castle, the village and the surrounding agricultural land should be achieved subtly via indirect connections; maintaining the autonomy of the subspaces and underlining their special atmospheres.

Englische Linie

008 Under the Pavement: the Beach Urban Intervention, Cologne 2003 – BeL & Merlin E. Bauer

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status: completed
program: urban intervention
location: various urban spaces in Cologne
team: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Merlin E. Bauer
cost: 4.000 €
date: since summer 2002

Kölner Architekturpreis 2003 – urban intervention

www.am-strand.org

Under the Pavement - the Beach is a paradigmatic utilization of public space.
Aimed to resurrect the urban realm from the decay of civic culture Under the Pavement - the Beach uses public space for temporary gatherings.
A multitude of hosts pick locations for specific instant programs, the mobile Strandbox unit provides the necessary infrastructure including coolboxes, a pirate radio transmitter, luggage space for dishes, etc.

 

Englische Linie

131.3 Quartier Spielbudenplatz: Housing Competition, 1st prize, Hamburg-St. Pauli 2016-2020 – BeL & NL Architects

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status: in progress
program: housing
location: St. Pauli, Hamburg
team BeL: Anne-Julchen Bernhardt, Jörg Leeser, Christiane Schmidt, Alia Mortada, Julia Kaulen, Michel Kleinbrahm, Jonas Läufer, Wolfgang Zeh
team NL: Kamiel Klaasse, Kirsten Hüsig, Laura Riano Lopez, Pieter Bannenberg, Guilia Pastore, Jasna Kajevic
structural engineer: Jürgen Bernhardt, Cologne
client: Bayerische Hausbau GmbH & Co. KG., Bezirksamt Hamburg Mitte
date: August 2016

Plot 3 is composed of three residential buildings: the ‘Liège’ tower, the ‘Gradient’ building, and the Zigzag house. Each has access to the communal courtyard and features a public or communal roof function. Most prominent of these is the basketball court, which crowns the gradient building. Accessed by a public staircase between the Liege tower and the gradient building, it is connected by a setback at the sixth floor of the tower to ‘Park Fiction 2.0’ and the rooftop restaurant of Plot 1, completing a network of public roof spaces.  

The 11-storey Liege tower is a small high-rise building; it lives from the flats' view of the city. Each floor has four units, oriented to one side, with additional sunlight and views provided by its characteristic projecting winter gardens, which function as balcony in the summer and additional room in the winter. At ground level, Liège is set back from the street, creating a small square. The 24-hour shop here has a large canopy reminiscent of the old Esso petrol station. The square preludes the ascent upwards to the public roofs, while the half-height setback at the 6th floor enables the connection of basketball court and Park Fiction 2.0. At this junction a large penthouse, a common room for indoor activities or a superintendent office can be created

The Gradient building features flats of different sizes, accessed via arcade. The flats get progressively larger towards the corner, creating a surreal perspective effect; a kind of trompe-l'oeil. The motto is not ‘one size fits all,’ but ‘one size for everyone.’ To exploit natural light, the largest flat inhabits the corner, while the arcade is pushed back from the East façade, creating a private threshold and balconies. To the West, mini balconies enjoy evening sun over Taubenstraße and foster interaction with the street.

With a communal children's play area on the roof, the zigzag house completes the ensemble. It cleverly exploits spacing to look in all directions. It is a three-story building with a twisted floor plan; the flats have qualities that are otherwise only possible in a free-standing building. They are designed to be open to different occupancies: residents can live or sleep facing the Kastanienallee as well as the street. The balconies and loggias provide deep streetscapes or catch the western sun on the courtyard side.

Englische Linie

107 7/8 house Prototype Single-Family House, IBA Hamburg 2014