Inspired by an architectural competition in which they participated Zachariaki Danai, Kapsani Anastasia and Parisopoulou Eftichia completed their diploma thesis, titled “Urban crossings towards the Spree River: multiple ways of living in Berlin”, submitting a design proposal for a residential complex in Berlin combined with a set of public functions. Thesis was presented in June 2017 in the Department of Architecture of Democritus University of Thrace.
–text by the authors
Very often, designing a project is an assignment procedure for an architect, as they are not the ones who define the site and the building program. So, while searching for the subject of our final project, we turned to architectural competitions where the work frame is well defined and connected to real world requirements and unavoidable restrictions. Inspired by an architectural competition, in which we also participated, the title of our project: “Urban crossings towards the Spree River: multiple ways of living in Berlin”, was born.
The objective of the thesis project refers to the design proposal of a residential complex in Berlin, combined with a set of public functions. The residential buildings are university residences, temporary housing and a hostel for young travellers. The public functions serve both the residents of the complex and at the same time call the citizens of the area to visit it.
The initial idea behind the study was to design a meeting point among students, citizens and young travellers seeking a different experience in one of the most characteristic neighborhoods and most alternative districts of Berlin, Kreuzberg.
The challenge was to resolve the threshold between private and public areas in order to provide the surroundings with new spaces for collective use.
Our vision was to lead the citizens through our design proposal, coming closer to the river. That fact played a significant role for keeping always an open view to the river by raising the buildings’ mass.
The main buildings of the complex have the structure of bridge type buildings.
They are made of steel trusses which are based on concrete pillars. The pillars also double as the stairways of the buildings. The facades of the buildings are made of double-glazed windows. In this way buffer zones are created, which are the expansion of the spaces and contribute to the better insulation of the building. In the southern side, the glazed windows have the potential to open and enhance the cooling of the space in the summer months.
Drawings & Model
Project title Urban crossings towards the Spree River: multiple ways of living in Berlin
Students Zachariaki Danai, Kapsani Anastasia, Parisopoulou Eftichia
Date June 2017
Course Diploma Thesis
Supervisors Xanthi Theoni, Kokkoris Panos, Patrikios Georgios
Institution Department of Architecture, Democritus University of Thrace
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