Freiburg: Hugo Häring award presented – four municipal buildings in Freiburg received significant architectural awards

The administration building at the main cemetery, the town hall in Stühlinger, the extension of the Pestalozzi School and the Adolf-Reichwein-Bildungshaus were honored

When Freiburg builds, people look closely – especially from the architects’ guild. Now the city of Freiburg, as the client, has received an important award for architecture in the state for four buildings at a regional level, the Hugo Häring Award 2020. The award has now been presented in Freiburg.

A total of eleven buildings between Herbolzheim, Merzhausen and Lenzkirch were recognized by the five-person jury chaired by the independent architect (BDA) Stefanie Eberding. This also includes the administration building at the Freiburg main cemetery, the new town hall in Stühlinger, the extension of the Pestalozzi School in the Haslach district and the Adolf Reichwein educational center on Bugginger Straße.

Every three years, the Freiburg / Breisgau-Hochschwarzwald district group of the Association of German Architects (BDA) awards the Hugo Häring award to buildings that are convincing in terms of planning and design. Häring was one of the most important initiators of “New Building”.

The award at the regional level is the first stage of the nationwide process. The Hugo Häring Prize for Baden-Württemberg will later be awarded among the winners of the 15 BDA district groups. It is considered to be the most important award for architecture in the country.

The jury was impressed by the fact that the administration building of the city’s main cemetery clearly stands out from the other buildings built in the classicist and neo-renaissance styles and acts as a link between everyday life and the atmosphere of the main cemetery. The justification also praises its sensitive placement in the ensemble of the cemetery. Made of monolithic walls and provided with carefully designed openings, the building exudes a pleasant calm. The artisanal plaster structures and the untreated wood increased its strong presence and at the same time its fragility.

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The administration building at the main cemetery was officially inaugurated in June 2018. It was planned by the Weissenrieder Architects BDA from Freiburg on behalf of the city. The new building replaces a low-rise building from the 1960s. By moving away from the listed northern gatehouse building, the historical situation at the main entrance to the cemetery could be restored. In 2015, Freiburg’s design advisory board recognized the two-story design as a “historic city repair”.

The administration building meets all legal requirements for energy saving and even falls below them by 75 percent. When selecting the materials, particular attention was paid to the ecological aspect. The building has purely mineral external insulation without plastic additives, which should also ensure a longer service life. A total of 3.4 million euros were invested in the building.

The jury particularly praised the architectural clarity of the expansion of the Pestalozzi School on Staufener Straße (architects: Spiecker Sautter Lauer). It immediately reveals its intentions by naturally completing the listed school complex. The elongated three-storey extension defines on the one hand the green space of the village stream and on the other hand the school yard, which is defined by sports areas. The entrance, cafeteria and dining room open onto this courtyard. The classrooms on the upper floor, on the other hand, are oriented towards the secluded stream.

The building, implemented by the municipal building management (GMF), is designed to conserve resources and, with its high-quality clinker brick facade, creates a striking contrast to the materials of the old school building. In conclusion, the jury raved about a “pleasantly beautiful school complex”. Construction began in December 2016, the extension was completed in spring 2018 and cost 7.67 million euros.

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The building management received another award for “his” Adolf-Reichwein-Bildungshaus on Bugginger Straße (architect: Riehle + Assoziierte Reutlingen). A common protective roof forms the entrance zone and is a successful mediator between school and day care center. According to the jury, this pleasantly proportioned room chamber offers weather protection, room for movement and at the same time defines a place for encounters. The group rooms of the school kindergarten, developed consistently to the south or east, give the outside area a pleasant setting with their L-shaped floor plan. With its flexible interior, the new all-day area of ​​the school provides a lively space for the school and the district. The solid wood construction, which can be experienced with all the senses inside, is particularly praised in the new educational center. This experience of the materiality is consistently carried to the outside in the lively appearance of the educational center and thus creates an identity for the location.

The town hall in Stühlinger (Ingenhoven Architects, Düsseldorf), which went into operation in November 2017 after a three-year construction period, has been attracting national attention for a long time. According to the jury, it deserved the Hugo Häring award for several reasons. Initially as a building that brings together 16 administrative units and offices with around 840 employees, which were previously distributed in the city, in one place, so that space is created in city properties and simplifies the way for citizens. Then as an administrative center that preserves privacy in customer relationships in open, friendly rooms. Last but not least, it was the first public building in the world of this size to be designed in accordance with the net plus energy standard. The oval west of the city center has thus become a modern, ecological landmark.

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With a little luck, the city of Freiburg can hope for the Hugo Häring State Prize to be awarded next year.

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