Frankfurt am Main, Germany
- KSP Jürgen Engel Architekten
- Frankfurt am Main, Germany
- Palais Quartier GmbH & Co. KG
The high-rises in PalaisQuartier, a 135-meter-high tower with offices and a second tower containing a hotel and about 96 meters high, form the architectural highpoints of this new district in downtown Frankfurt. Together with the Thurn und Taxis Palais Townhouse, which has been rebuilt to preserve its original façade, and the “MyZeil” shopping mall, the district has a decidedly urban flair. Position outside the limits of the cluster of high-rises in the neighboring banking district and thus emphasized all the more as standalones inside the inner city ring, the PalaisQuartier towers highlight the profile of the site – with shapes that catch the eye even from a great distance. The towers’ slightly titled facades are clearly structured by the three striking fold lines and their height, which is clearly defined by the design and derived from the overall shape. Inspired by Constantin Brancusi’s gleaming column-like artworks, the two towers with their sculptural qualities serve as unmistakable points of orientation in the city’s fabric.
Fanning out in a windmill pattern, the office zones of the 25 and 34 storeys high towers with the areas for tenancy offer approx. 790 sq. m. to 1,100 sq. m. per story and are positioned around the core access shaft. These zones can, depending on the tenant’s requirements, be flexibly divided into two separate units. The tapering/expansion that results from the slightly tilted facades creates office footprints with different depths and encourages a great range of different office layouts. The usable depth of the office areasis about 5.90 meters in the tapered sections and up to 9.60 meters in the zones that jut out furthest.
Two materials, namely aluminum and glass, define the appearance of the face of the buildings, which are designed as segmented curtain-wall facades. Like the high-rises themselves, these material stand for technical innovation and architectural precision. The alternation of light and shadow also infuses the outer skin of the towers with a vibrancy depending on the time of day or year.The eye-catching characteristic of the towers are, when seen from the side, the diamond-shaped fully glazed surfaces. They are integrated into the façade like crystalline bodies and emphasize the towers’ sculptural properties. In order to emphasize the crystalline character of the glass diamonds are implemented as dual facades using highly transparent, untreated panes of glass.
The energy concept envisages that about 50 percent of the heating/cooling energy requirement is covered by sustainable systems. About 20 percent of the figure is obtained geothermally via a combined heat-pump and cooling system. The highly efficient central heat recovery plant, that relies on radiant heat from the shopping mall and the underground carpark, provides about 30 percent of the total heating energy requirement. The rented areas are cooled/heated by means of a heating control system for the respective building section integrated into the concrete ceilings. For this reason, there is no need for suspended ceilings in the sections containing office workstations. The clearance in the rooms is therefore 3.05 meters in the office high-rise although the storey height is only 3.50 meters.
Ambient temperature, lighting and solar protection blinds are all centrally controlled via sensors, whereby they can be individually set at any time. The windows in the office areas can be opened to provide natural ventilation as and when required.
CTBUH Best Tall Building 2010 - Finalist