Monday, 28 December 2009

ECO CITY Hamburg, Germany

Germany’s historic Hamburg-Harburg Harbor recently announced the development of a sustainable ECO CITY that combines industry, entertainment and pedestrian life into one super green package.

Designed by international firm Tec Architecture and the global engineering company ARUP, ECO CITY is one of the only projects in the world that is seeking to achieve the highest level of environmental certification from all three major green building rating systems (LEED, BREEAM and DGNB). The project is an exceptional example of how to integrate efficient technology and building methods while fostering social interaction and community rebirth.

ECO CITY is a ground-breaking sustainable urban development that offers a rich mix of classic industry architecture, lovingly restored harbor buildings, and modern architecture for businesses looking forward to the next millennium.

Known as the ‘German Venice’, the port city of Hamburg is rapidly developing beyond its maritime history. Within the past few years Harburg has experienced major advancements in commercial and residential growth, cultivating multifarious layers of enriching diversity. The ECO CITY project proposes to not only enhance Harburg’s current progression, but to set a new standard for environmentally forward construction of our built world.

The initial signs of Germany’s first entirely sustainable creative-industrial corporate development are sprouting up on the shores of Hamburg-Harburg Harbor. Once the site of Hercules Sägemann’s Kamm world-renowned comb factory, and a ship building area before that in the late 19th century, the new ECO CITY Hamburg-Harburg is situated on a site well associated with German entrepreneurship and ingenuity. ECO CITY revives and continues this tradition, offering new generations of businesses workspace that is healthy, sustainable, and inspiring.

Only a few kilometers from Hamburg’s center, ECO CITY lies in Harburg’s harbor area, and can easily be accessed via air, water, road, or rail.

Situated within the commercial and cultural growth of the Hamburg-Harburg Harbor, ECO CITY provides an ideal location for environment‑friendly, cutting edge city development.

‘ECO CITY represents a synergistic approach to urban development,’ explains tec Principal Sebastian Knorr. ‘By working in close cooperation with all the stakeholders and taking into consideration the immediate environmental context of the project, we’ve created a different type of sustainable, creative-industrial complex. We hope that iconic ECO CITY project becomes a model for sustainable urban development.’


Big Thinking with a Small Carbon Footprint:
A Sustainable Creative-Industrial Environment for the Future
‘ARUP thinks about sustainability in every aspect of our design and as engineers we understand the driving principles of the triple bottom line – environmental / social / economic,’ adds ARUP Principal Steve Done. ‘For a project to be truly sustainable, it must embrace and meet each of these categories of need, and ECO CITY certainly accomplishes this.’


Good for the Planet, Good for People
ECO CITY is one of very few projects in the world designed to achieve a globally green rating from the three major green building rating systems on the planet: USGBC’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Program, the Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM), and the German Sustainable Building Council (DGNB)’s Program. Currently, ECO CITY is seeking the highest level of environmental certification from all three programs.

Capitalizing on the predominantly westerly winds that blow in off the North Sea, the design proposes two large wind turbines atop high-rise towers. These functioning (as opposed to ornamental) building-integrated turbines will generate more than 10% of the complex’s power, surpassing any other high-rise project in the world. Solar water heating will be used to offset the use of natural gas. Site lighting will be powered by solar technology. Over forty percent of ECO CITY’s footprint will consist of open air. The majority of all visible roofs will be green roofs, serving to slow storm water runoff and significantly reducing the heat island effect of ECO CITY.

Green areas will be elevated to the second story where there is more access to air and sunlight. In addition to roof gardens, more than half the site will be covered with vertical gardens, further minimizing the development’s carbon footprint and maximizing leisure space. These raised green beltways will create a microclimate of sorts, allowing workers and visitors ample outdoor recreation space. The project will utilize environmentally friendly materials that will help promote a healthy indoor building atmosphere. Passive design techniques and efficient façade and building design will reduce energy consumption by about 30%. Existing structures from the original site have been rehabilitated and materials from demolished structures re-used whenever possible. Located within walking distance from several major transportation nodes, ECO CITY is an easy commute or quick bike ride for most visitors.


The Creative-Industrial Complex
ECO CITY represents one of the first creative-industrial complexes. Comprised of ten major structures, ECO CITY offers a variety of different spaces for different purposes, bringing both large-scale industry and creative start-ups together in one, cooperative, and ecofriendly business community. The spaces range from studios to large warehouse and production facilities.

With Phase 1 completed, ECO CITY has secured its first major tenant with the arrival of Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG, the global manufacturer of printing presses that can trace its history back to the 1800s. The pioneering company brings over 150 new jobs to the area and features an interactive showroom that showcases the company’s advances in the area of ecological printing methods.

During Phase 2, construction will begin on the first high-rise tower that will house a luxury hotel, restaurant, and retail space, attracting people from beyond ECO CITY to the location, making it a destination in and of itself. Construction will also begin on B05, a major office complex located on the very visible corner site of the development. The five-story office block is slated for completion in Spring / Summer 2010.

The final phase of construction will see the completion of ECO CITY, including the second highrise tower, remaining storage and production facilities, and several more auxiliary buildings. Phase 2 is currently in entitlement.


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