In March 2017, architectural practice MVRDV released plans for the revitalisation of a former US army barracks in the Franklin Mitte neighbourhood of Mannheim.
The 144-hectare site will offer a mixed-use development, including a central ‘hub’, a green hill made from demolished barrack buildings,shops, restaurants, cafes and community spaces.
Key to the design are four residential towers, the form of which will spell the word ‘H-O-M-E’. Around each building there will be a plaza in the shape of the projected shadow of the letter, its size determined by local regulations that call for a certain distance between neighbouring buildings.
The ‘O’ tower will be 12,380 sq. m and contain 120 apartments, while the ‘M’ tower will be 17,890 sq. m and contain 185 apartments, each with a 'pixel-type' appearance.
The towers will each have bright individual colours making them stand out in the landscape, and will be orientated around the hill with a rotation towards the ‘Vogelstang’ district and the highway making them readable from a distance.
The challenge facing MVRDV was to introduce density and diversity, drawing on the site’s existing fabric, while reusing and repurposing the original barracks to create a new community space.
Content and images courtesy of MVRDV.
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