Foster and Partners have launched concept designs for Eurogate, a dramatic new zero-emission, sustainable building that offers flexible office, hotel and/or conferencing facilities. It benefits from a prime location along the harbour front, extending the already vibrant public attractions and pedestrian routes around Duisburg Inner Harbour. The successful urban renewal of the former industrial harbour has been underway for over a decade, and the realisation of this ambitious masterplan has seen a dramatic transformation of the area into a vibrant waterside setting that continues to attract new and growing businesses and communities.
Lord Foster, Chairman and Founder of Foster and Partners noted, "Our work in Duisburg and the regeneration of the citys Inner Harbour is not about the dramatic single image. Instead, it works at a more discreet level, quietly demonstrating the potential to reinvigorate declining urban areas to build richer, more sustainable communities for the future. Duisburg is living, working proof of the value of high quality infrastructure and the significance of the spaces between buildings as much as the buildings, themselves. New construction together with selective refurbishment has created vibrant neighbourhoods that combine places to live, work and play. "
David Nelson, Deputy Chairman of Foster and Partners said, "Our work in Duisburg spans more than a decade, and it has been a rare privilege to realise our masterplan in its entirety - to achieve the complete and comprehensive transformation of a city quarter - reinventing the relationship between the city and the water. Eurogate is the final piece of the jigsaw. It is a distillation of our original ambition to create a sustainable, vibrant waterside development."
These wide-reaching and comprehensive improvements to the area are in no small part due to the determination and stamina of the Duisburg Inner Harbour Development Company, which continues to implement Fosters' original 1991 competition-winning scheme, displayed in their Hafenforum offices. The final piece of the scheme is Eurogate - a waterside office development. Arguably on the best site in the harbour, Eurogate is key to the successful realisation of the original ambition for the future of Duisburg.
With many cafes and restaurants, an art gallery, new houses, offices, converted historic buildings and a new park, Duisburg Harbour is becoming a thriving commercial centre in its own right, and benefits from excellent transportation links to key cities and towns throughout the Ruhr. Eurogate reinforces this growing dynamism, and it provides unrivalled high quality waterside facilities for work as well as leisure.
A crescent shaped building, the volume is punctuated with courtyards and atria to ensure natural ventilation, maximum daylight penetration and views to the water. Within the advanced geometry of the shell, rational rectangular floorplates enable fast and cost-effective construction. Striving to be zero-emission, the building has an ideal south facing orientation, and extensive use of photovoltaic technology gives Eurogate its distinctive façade while generating income from electricity to power up to 200 family homes. At ground level, there will be cafes, a promenade and steps abutting the water, while the configuration of offices inside remains a working brief that can be tailored to suit specific tenants.
Facts and Figures
Location: Duisburg Inner Harbour
Site area: 13,500m²
Built-up area: 7,000m²
Gross area: 41,500m²
Net rentable area: c. 35,000m²
Levels: 10 above ground, 2 below ground
Floor Area: 300 1,000m²
Estimated start on site: 2007
Parking: 720 car parking spaces on two levels, 80 car parking spaces externally
Cost: 80 million Euro
Duisburg Inner Harbour 1993 - 2005
Total redevelopment area: 89 hectares
Redevelopment projects already realised: 40
New residential units: 700 (c. 450 completed and occupied)
New office area: 150,000 m² (latest figure from 2005)
Number of work places created: c. 5,000
Client: Innenhafen Duisburg Entwicklungsgesellschaft mbH
Architect: Foster and Partners
Structural Engineer: Werner Sobek Ingenieure
Mechanical and Electrical Engineer: Schmidt Reuter GmbH