Daniel Libeskind designs metallic
apartment block for Berlin

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Daniel Libeskind designs metallic apartment block for Berlin's Chausseestrasse

News: architect Daniel Libeskind has unveiled plans to build an angular apartment block in Berlin that will feature a gleaming metallic facade.

Daniel Libeskind designs metallic apartment block for Berlin's Chausseestrasse

Daniel Libeskind, whose previous Berlin projects include the Jewish Museum, designed the eight-storey building for a corner plot on Chausseestrasse, in the Mitte district of Berlin.

Daniel Libeskind designs metallic apartment block for Berlin's Chausseestrasse

Set to complete in 2015, the building will accommodate shops at ground level and 73 residences on its upper storeys.

The facade will be clad using a specially developed stoneware tile with a reflective metallic coating, which the studio claims will be both self-cleaning and air-purifying.

Daniel Libeskind designs metallic apartment block for Berlin's Chausseestrasse

Large asymmetric windows will be added to maximise natural light within the building and parking will be located underground.

A penthouse apartment at the front will feature a double-height living room, as well as a roof terrace looking out across the city.

Daniel Libeskind designs metallic apartment block for Berlin's Chausseestrasse

Describing the building, Libeskind commented: "Even as my studio is often called upon to design skyscrapers these days, I continue to love to build homes, the basic unit of human life."

Here's a more detailed description from Studio Daniel Libeskind:


Daniel Libeskind returns to Berlin to build and apartment building in centre of city

Studio Daniel Libeskind has just unveiled the design for a residential building in Berlin that, upon completion in 2015, is expected to brighten the already emerging neighbourhood of Chausseestrasse. With large angular windows designed to catch maximum light, canted walls, and a metallic-­coated ceramic facade, the 107,000 sq. ft. (10,000 m2) Chausseestrasse 43 occupies the corner of a block in central Berlin. Says the architect: “Even as my studio is often called upon to design skyscrapers these days, I continue to love to build homes, the basic unit of human life.” In this case, Libeskind is adding a dash of brightness and transparency to a key spot in Berlin, one that also happens to be located directly opposite the headquarters of Germany's Federal Intelligence Service.

Daniel Libeskind's challenge was to create 73 desirable one-­ to four-bedroom apartments on a more or less rectangular plot a little less than half an acre (16,000 sq. ft.), accommodating attractive retail on the ground floor, underground parking, and a common outdoor area. The architect achieved this and more. The dramatic coda is found at the top, where a penthouse apartment, perched on the prow of the building, embodies the ultimate in inside/outside urban living. Here, a double-­height living room is lined on one side by a sloping wall of obliquely shaped windows, which leads out to a patio overlooking Berlin. A floating stairway ascends to an open-plan living area, bedrooms are tucked into the rear, and the ceiling sweeps up to a height of 21 feet.

The facade cladding is an innovative three­‐dimensional stoneware tile that Libeskind designed with the Italian company Casalgrande Padana. The geometric ceramic panels not only create an expressive metallic pattern, but they possess surprising sustainable properties such as air purification and they are self-­cleaning.

This cathedral for modern living occupies a piece of land where the Wulffersche iron factory once operated before being expropriated from its Jewish owners during World War II.

The Berlin-­based real estate developer, MINERVA, is handling the technical and economic implementation of Chausseestrasse 43 in partnership with the Berlin-based property developer, econcept. The 20­-year-old MINERVA specialises in real estate development for commercial and residential projects, such as the contemporary Alexander Parkside apartment and hotel complex that recently opened in Berlin. Econcept specialises in the construction of new residential buildings, such as the Palais KolleBelle, a new residential complex in Berlin inspired by the architecture of 19th-­century Paris.

  • DL1119

    This is so bad.

  • Dolf

    Not buying…

  • Simon Gerssen

    Grey is not what Berlin needs. Great penthouse anyway.

  • happycamper

    There are plenty of projects on Dezeen that receive positive comments – projects that are modest, respectful of context, well detailed and generous in their intentions. These qualities shine through in the projects that are successful – see todays post on the Rwandan school for a fine example.

    I completely agree with all the other posters on this Libeskind project – it’s banal and pointless and adds nothing to the cityscape of Berlin.

  • Brendan

    You are right. I would have KILLED to get this project, but I would have been EMBARRASSED to deliver the result that Libeskind dumped on Berlin. I would have examined the problem and creatively devised a result that was respectful of the program and context. Libeskind just cranked out the same old wedges and pointy crap. I doubt if he spent a whole minute studying the problem before he decided his pro-forma trapezoidal schlock was the way to go.

  • Beer Lynn Er

    Don’t know why there is so much more hostility about this design than any other post modernist posting, do you? What the design does confirm, is that the KING has the same strategic outpost as always – at the top of the mountain. Twisting of 90 degree corner is a bit of fun.

  • http://www.theidlearchitect.com/ The Idle Architect

    Command: stretch, enter; move mouse, enter, save – done.

  • Kraye D

    This is not architecture. It is just bad graphic design applied to the outside of a conventional slab building. It’s like nobody even tried to create a work of architecture.

    • Kenneth Smythe

      Are his clients architecturally blind? Daniel is totally lacking in poetic invention and his buildings reveal this.

  • C. Fontana

    This kind of silly form-making might make sense for a roadside fast food restaurant or fairground ticket booth, but it is wholly inappropriate in an urban setting which requires an architect with a mature and refined level of design. Libeskind just doesn’t get that not so subtle distinction.