In the German city of Gütersloh a former military site will be transformed into a living and working area for approximately a thousand houses and 20.000 square meters commercial space and facilities. Four combinations of architect, landscapers and urban designers were invited to take place in a competition for the urban design. Firstly as a participant in a five-day long workshop on the site. The two winners, among which our team, were asked to make a revision of their study.
The site covers 28 acres and consists mainly of sports fields, military barracks and armored workshops, the so-called Pantzerhalle. The barracks, that were specifically built to accommodate the soldiers and their families are not likely to be re-used as houses that live up to the current standards for housing and will mostly be demolished in our plan. The Pantzerhalle however, characterized by the spectacular truss constructions are being transformed into mixed-use buildings, exposition spaces and activity halls.
An important quality of the site is the infrastructure, as well above as underground. In a period of more than 80 years green lanes and parks are originated with numerous worthful trees. Not so much the barracks, but the historic urban structure is the basis of our plan. The military site however lacks hierarchy in public and private space, therefore we introduced the “Dorfstrasse”(Village street) as a central axe and the quality of the existing green structure will be used to create parks and(semi) public gardens.
The traffic will be lead over a circular street on which so-called “parking hubs” are situated. Because of this the residential streets and the village street are car-free. The parking hubs, super-efficient parking garages with green facades and a pergola of solar panels on the roof, function as little power plants for the neighborhood because of the energy transition with electrical cars.
In collaboration with:
competition design, 2nd place
Niels Olivier, Henk Döll
Coido Architects, Döll Architecten, Karres en Brands