OZEANEUM, Stralsund, Baltic Coast Building, Germany, Photo, Design, Picture
Baltic Coast Architecture: German Oceanographic Museum – design by Behnisch Architekten
17 Mar 2009
Location: Stralsund, Baltic Coast, northeast Germany
Architects: Behnisch Architekten
The new Oceanographic Museum OZEANEUM is located on the city’s historic waterfront immediately adjacent to the historic centre which has been classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. With a striking skyline of restored warehouses and visible traces of its former use, the entire port island district remains to this day an autonomous, distinctive architectural monument on the outskirts of the historic city centre. The OZEANEUM building relates to the sea, rather than to the buildings of the old town.
It is conceived as an open house that can be ‘flooded’ from all sides by daylight and visitors, in a manner akin to that of water swirling around stones on the seabed. The building is divided into four individual sections, each of which is devoted to a particular exhibition theme.
The layout of the museum allows visitors to take a spectacular journey of discovery, through and between the ‘stones’. Each ‘stone’ or building element covers a specific exhibition topic.
The main entrance to the OZEANEUM lies on the new harbour promenade. The ground floor of the foyer, an independent entity, suspended amidst the seemingly hermetic exhibition areas, accommodates a shop and a café as well as the museum’s front-of-house services. A 30 m suspended escalator diagonally traverses the entire breadth of the foyer, past genuine whale skeletons, to bring visitors to the upper floor. From there a splendid view opens across the Strelasund and the new Rugen Bridge to Rugen Island.
The exhibition areas are located on the upper storey and linked by footbridges and ramps. Tours of the exhibition areas are designed to bypass general visitor traffic.
The design of each section of the OZEANEUM was essentially led by the building’s functional requirements. The aquaria are set around a central core of maintenance and technical amenities. This optimises the use of space, shortens timeframes for the daily feeding and care of marine stock, and also offers visitors a neat circuit of the inner aquarium core.
Freely slung ribbons of steel, reminiscent of sails billowing in the wind, determine the shape of the respective ‘stones’. They draw together the various sections of the building and give them a strong, unified profile.
One of the three historic warehouses on the site has been incorporated in the OZEANEUM and accommodates the museum administration, a multi-purpose hall for the museums’ educational projects, a self-contained, multi-purpose hall for public events and, on level 0, a gastronomic outlet.
Original interior and exterior flooring that has survived on the northern port island bears witness to various epochs and usages. Old, variously sized granite cobblestones cover large areas. The entire outdoor area of the OZEANEUM has likewise been laid with granite and the same material can also be found in the foyer, where it serves to optically merge interior and exterior space. It also fulfils the heritage preservation board’s demand that contemporary materials match historic remains.
Round ‘green tussocks’ with a wooden rim upon which visitors can take a seat define the leisure area in the museum’s forecourt. They are planted with grass that blows in the wind and also offers a measure of shelter. The arrangement of these elements creates differentiated spaces – the café area, the reception area and so on – and makes the extensive, open-air harbour location a decidedly attractive venue for leisure and recreation.
OZEANEUM – Building Information
Client: Deutsches Meeresmuseum Stralsund
Building address: Ozeaneum, Hafenstraße 11, Nördliche Hafeninsel, 18439 Stralsund
Project Start: 2005
Project Completion: 2008
Gross: 17,300 m²
Effective Surface Area: 8,700 m²
Volume: 90,900 m3
Architects: Behnisch Architekten, Stuttgart (Stefan Behnisch, David Cook, Martin Haas)
Competition: Behnisch & Partner, Stuttgart (Günter Behnisch, Manfred Sabatke)
Project leaders: Peter Schlaier, Elke Reichel Project staff: Jakob Fürniß, Sebastian Wockenfuß, Antonella Sgobba, Florian Kneer, Berthold Jungblut, Katja Knaus, Jörg Knaus, Michael Kern, David Mrugala
Structural: Schweitzer GmbH Beratende Ingenieure, Saarbrücken
Energy concept: Transsolar Energietechnik GmbH, Stuttgart
Exhibition design: Atelier Lohrer, Stuttgart / argea Fassbender & Heppert, Stralsund
Landscaping: Prof. Nagel, Schonhoff & Partner, Hannover, with Behnisch Architekten.
Ozeaneum Stralsund images / information from Behnisch Architekten 160309
Ozeaneum : more photos + information
The Competition was won by Behnisch & Partner
To see all listed projects on a single map please follow this link.
Mies van der Rohe Awards 2009 Nominee
Selected German Buildings
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OZEANEUM Stralsund Building