Bunker ConversionBerlin, GERMANY
The Humboldthain Flak Tower was built in World War II to hold anti-aircraft guns and provide shelter for 15,000 civilians. In an attempt to destroy the building just after the end of the war only half of the structure collapsed. The remains are predominantly hidden by a rubble mountain of 1.5 million cubic meters of debris from the war bombings.
The tower is situated in a residential park area just north of central Berlin in close proximity to major rail and road intersections. With its constant temperature and humidity throughout the year, this space is ideal for the storage and presentation of fresh produce. The proposal is dedicated to a food co-operative as storage, point of sale and for community-based work and activities.
Inside the bunker, the spaces will be created by what remains of the structure with additions only where it serves the needs of the programme. The only subtraction from the form will be selected removals of post-1945 in-fills with the exception of internal windows to allow the kitchen space to function. Elevators will be replaced in the shafts and new additions to the stairs and extra walkways will be added. These are to have a continuous language of ionised steel to complement, but yet differentiate them from the original structure. A steel structure for a canopy to accommodate a café is to be added to one tower and a multi-use function room to the other. The steel from the height-reduction of the existing perimeter fence is used to build the canopy and internal space; both of these structures are derived from the existing geometric configuration inside the bunker.
Exhibitied (Venice Biennale): 2012