Germany has a thriving architectural scene which includes big names on the German and international stage as well as up-and-coming German architectural firms. Following the reunification, Berlin became one of the main centers for modern architecture but it has also undertaken great measures to restore and preserve its historical masterpieces, including the magnificent Museum Island.
Current trends include a leaning toward a multiplicity of forms, as seen in Daniel Liebeskind’s extension to the Jewish Museum in Berlin, Norman Foster’s Reichstag dome, and the Gehry buildings on the Düsseldorf waterfront, or toward Bauhaus-inspired minimalism such as Berlin’s new central railway station by Meinhard von Gerkan. It is in green building and ecological improvements, however, that German architecture really leads the way.
Revolutionary architecture, such the Neues Bauen of the twenties, Neue Sachlichkeit, and functionalism, were early international exports. Today, Germany's eco-design and sustainable building practices are inspiring architects and builders worldwide.
On the architecture campus at Vitra in Weil am Rhein there’s some more avant-garde architecture to marvel at. The furniture manufacturers are showcasing their products in the new show home. People have never seen anything like it before.
The VitraHaus Show House
Spectacular architecture, Hanseatic stringency, a model for climate-friendly living: HafenCity in Hamburg, the largest urban development program in Europe, is creating an urbane city structure that breathes. The “real estate project” is becoming “home” to many.
In 2013, the new Berlin airport Berlin-Brandenburg will be opened in Schönefeld. Now, the German capital is facing the rare task (and opportunity?) of having two complete airport sites with buildings in the greater urban area at its disposal – and having to repurpose them.
Tempelhof & Tegel
For the past 25 years the Deutsche Stiftung Denkmalschutz (German Foundation for Monument Conservation) has done a great deal for historical testimonies in stone. Established in 1985, this citizens’ initiative has so far supported 3,600 monuments with around 430 million euros.