Laagberg Memorial and Learning Site, Wolfsburg Buildings, German Architecture

Laagberg Memorial and Learning Site in Wolfsburg

2 Oct 2020

Laagberg Memorial and Learning Site

Design: Hoskins Architects

Location: Wolfsburg, central Germany

In September 2020 Hoskins Architects, working with landscape architects guba+sgard and exhibition designers Ralph Appelbaum Associates, won the competition to design the new Laagberg Memorial and Learning Site in Wolfsburg.

Laagberg Memorial and Learning Site Wolfsburg

In 2017 the remains of former prison barracks, that formed an outpost of the Neuengamme concentration camp, were discovered in the district of Laagberg. In this location, a new place, suitable for remembrance and learning
will be created – a site of communication.

Laagberg Memorial and Learning Site Wolfsburg

Our approach seeks to take an observational position, highlighting the tensions between silence and liveliness
(the forest and residential area), processing and forgetting, coercion and self-determination. From an external
viewpoint and with historical distance, we ask ourselves how we feel about the present and future handling of
the culture of remembrance.

Laagberg Memorial and Learning Site Wolfsburg

Positioned between a supermarket and a petrol station, the new centre of remembrance and learning is
conceived as a “Stolperstein” or stumbling block and a marker of its time. At the place where an electric fence
once bordered the camp, a display of memories tells the stories of the individual inmates. The design expands
the site via a raised timber walkway along the historic edge of the neighbouring forest. This path defines the
measurements of the former camp, making its dimensions tangible via a transverse and a longitudinal axis and
allowing the visitor to engage with that which is no longer visible.

Laagberg Memorial and Learning Site Wolfsburg

Laagberg Memorial and Learning Site Wolfsburg

Hoskins Architects and Ralph Appelbaum Associates have a long history of successful collaborative working
including on projects such as the Doolan Award winning National Museum of Scotland, Culloden Battlefield Visitor Centre, Weltmuseum Wien in Vienna the Ulster Museum Masterplan and the Museum für Franken in Würzburg,
Germany. Together with guba+sgard the team developed an approach that tightly integrates landscape,
architecture and exhibition design an aspect that was highly commended by the judging panel.

Laagberg Memorial and Learning Site Wolfsburg

Design: Hoskins Architects

Laagberg Memorial and Learning Site Wolfsburg

Images © Hoskins Architects, guba + sgard Landschaftsarchitekten, Ralph Appelbaum Associates

Hoskins Architects

Laagberg Memorial and Learning Site, Wolfsburg images / information received 021020

Location: Wolfsburg, central Germany

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Website: Wolfsburg, DE