Innovative rooftop made of modular timber homes proposed for Berlin's complex
Architect Sigurd Larsen and his team took part in the City Above the City architecture design competition organised by Metsä Wood in 2016. Their project "Dachkiez, Village on the Roof," was one of the winners in the competition. This year, the project and the architect were invited to the Venice Biennale.
The Venice Biennale of Architecture is globally one of the biggest exhibitions for architecture. The event takes place every other year, and this year it lasts from 26 May until 25 November. The main architecture exhibition takes place at 30 pavilions in the Venice Giardini, many of them designed by the biggest names in architecture, like Carlo Scarpa and Alvar Aalto.
City Above the City competition
Metsä Wood's competition inspired architects worldwide to design wooden extensions to go on top of existing buildings in city centres. Some 170 entries from 40 countries proposed wooden solutions to the challenges of urbanisation. The idea was to show how wooden materials, like Kerto® LVL (laminated veneer lumber) can make construction fast, light and green.
Sigurd Larsen together with Simon Jendreizig, Vanessa Panagiotopoulou, Marlene Kjeldsen, Guillermo Fernandez Villar and Pedro Campos Altozano designed a project called "Dachkiez, Village on the Roof" for the competition. A massive, 270-metre-long concrete block in Berlin was selected as the building plot for the design. The building is located at Heinrich-Heine-Straße between the attractive Kreuzberg and Mitte neighbourhoods.
In Dachkiez, the extension on top of the building is designed to use a flexible, wooden, modular system. The basic module is an apartment suitable for singles or couples. The basic unit can be extended with one or two plug-in modules, which can include additional bedrooms and an extension to the bathroom. The design also includes common areas like a green park on the rooftop. Each unit has big windows with a view of the Berlin skyline.
"This entry was both believable and utterly relevant to its social and urban context. It's entirely possible to construct and adds a further layer of landscape to the city," commented competition jury member Mike Kane, Senior Lecturer in Architecture at London South Bank University.
Sigurd Larsen design & architecture studio
Sigurd Larsen is a Danish architect based in Berlin and working in the fields of architecture and furniture design. He uses wood as the main material in the majority of his work. "The haptic of the material, the endless possibilities and the many positive attributes regarding sustainability make it a convincing choice," says Larsen.
Larsen founded his own design studio in 2009. This is his first invitation to the Biennale. "I was very excited about the invitation. We had a lot of great feedback from visitors. Several journalists described the Dachkiez project under the topic of wood construction, densification of inner cities and housing shortage."
Read a full description of the "Dachkiez, Village on the Roof" project here.