Henning Larsen Architects (HLA) have just unveiled their winning design for a new headquarters for technology expert Siemens in Munich, Germany. Coming out top in a competition that also included experienced practices schmidt hammer lassen architects and ingenhoven architects, HLA’s concept is based on a series of interconnected courtyards and passageways in an effort to stimulate interaction between the commercial complex and its city context.
Organised around the principles of Communication, Interaction and Innovation, the new volume will incorporate a number of public spaces into a largely commercial environment, with the top floor of the building open for public events such as art exhibitions with a stunning backdrop of the Munich skyline. HLA explains: “The public access to Siemens’ new headquarters creates a continuous flow of guests and passers-by and signals that corporate architecture of the 21st century should be open and inviting.”
A system of pedestrianised walkways energises the office block, with an interconnected network of bridges linking the office levels and a number of plazas and alleys unfolding the exterior space into a vibrant new open-air meeting place for employees and local residents. The initial concept looks to set a new benchmark for sustainable design, exceeding recognised standards such as DGNB Gold and LEED Platinum.
The esteemed competition jury - which included Siemens President and CEO Peter Löscher, the Mayor of Munich Christian Ude, and Head of the Department of Urban Planning in Munich Elisabeth Merk - issued a joint comment which reads: “With its self-confident and sensitive approach, the winning design will succeed in enhancing the quality of the urban environment within the parameters of the existing city.
“The spacious opening into Oskar-von-Miller-Ring will create a new self-confident address for the Siemens headquarters. The leafy forecourt will suddenly acquire a new meaning at the transition from the old city to the museum quarter, thereby creating an opportunity for inner urban development.”