Neubau der Kulturstiftung des Bundes am Franckeplatz 2 in Halle (Saale). Foto: Falk Wenzel

New headquarters of the Federal Cultural Foundation

On the grounds of the Franckesche Stiftungen

The Federal Cultural Foundation is located in Halle an der Saale on the grounds of the Franckesche Stiftungen, an extraordinary collection of buildings of cultural and historical significance which have been recommended for nomination as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Foundation’s new headquarters, designed by the Munich-based architectural office of Dannheimer & Joos, were built on the grounds of the Franckesche Stiftungen.

The construction of the building exemplified the goals of the Foundation – that of initiating and funding national and international, innovative cultural projects – combined with modern construction methods and sustainable, energy-efficient technology. With some 950 m2 of useable floor space on a 760-m2 piece of property, the new headquarters are elegantly integrated into the existing row of historic buildings of the Franckesche Stiftungen. For the first time, the entire staff of the Federal Cultural Foundation will have enough space to work together under one roof.

Architecture Competition and Winners

In spring 2009 the Federal Cultural Foundation announced plans to build new headquarters and established a design competition in which 160 architect’s offices participated. From this pool, a jury of experts selected 25 offices, from which they received 24 proposals (drawings and models). On 24 September 2009 the jury presented the winning proposals of the competition. The expert panel of judges for the competition were the architects Prof. Donatella Fioretti (Berlin), Prof. Peter Kulka (Cologne / Dresden), Alfred Nieuwenhuizen (Berlin), Silvia Schellenberg-Thaut (Leipzig), Volker Giezek (Dresden) and Maik Westhaus (Berlin).

The winner of the competition was the office of Dannheimer & Joos Architekten BDA München www.dannheimerjoos.de (15,000 euros).
Second place went to the office of Oberst & Kohlmayer GmbH Stuttgart www.kohlmayer-oberst-architekten.de (7,000 euros).
Third place went to the office of kister scheithauer gross Leipzig www.ksg-architekten.de (3,500 euros).

The 24 best proposals were displayed at a temporary exhibition room at Große Ulrichstraße 20 in downtown Halle from 2 to 23 October 2009.

The 2013 German Architecture Prize awarded to the Federal Cultural Foundation

On 12 June 2013, the Foundation’s newly constructed headquarters in Halle (Saale) was awarded one of five awards conferred by the jury of the 2013 German Architecture Prize. The jury explained its decision as follows: “The construction task called for an ‘artistic concept’ that would provide an architectural face to the Federal Cultural Foundation. For such a ‘cultural and art-funding institution which promotes innovative programmes’, it wouldn’t do to apply a specific style or aesthetic preference. Rather, the architectural design had to always permit re-interpretation. This is exactly what the architects achieved by analyzing the specifications of the task, abstracting the essentials and synthesizing them into a free spatial structure.” The architects Veronika Dannheimer and Tilman Joos from Munich received the award together with the Federal Cultural Foundation.