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Visit to the construction site Neuer Kanzlerplatz: How Bonn's third-highest building is being built

Visit to the construction site Neuer Kanzlerplatz : How Bonn's third-highest building is being built

The Neuer Kanzlerplatz at Reuterbrücke is growing. 21 floors of the shell building are finished, seven are still missing. Later, not only will work be done in the three buildings of the complex but the investors also want to offer something to every citizen of Bonn.

From zero to 14 in one minute, 18 seconds. The open construction site elevator rumbles leisurely up to the 14th floor on the outside of the high-rise building on Neuer Kanzlerplatz. In a year's time, it will take just a few seconds to whiz up to the rooftop lounge on the 27th floor in one of the eight elevators in the core of the building.

For the moment, that's pie in the sky. Twenty-one floors of the shell have been completed, seven are still missing. We go first to the 14th and climb the stairs to the 18th: bare concrete, half-height grids instead of windows, a dream view from the Siebengebirge to Cologne Cathedral, over the small-scale federal district. The Haus der Geschichte, the Kunstmuseum and the Bundeskunsthalle are strung together as if on a string of pearls. Wide as a giant, rusty tool the old chancellor's office lies in the former chancellor's park next to the Palais Schaumburg. In addition, Venusberg, Bonn City, the Rhine Arc: Bonn and the region are on display.

It's hard to imagine being able to concentrate at a desk on this floor, the panorama is so exciting and full of distractions, not to mention the changing light depending on the time of day.

"We're now at the height of the Marriott," says Thomas Leise, senior investment manager at Art-Invest Real Estate and in charge of the project for five years. "And we'll add another 40 meters on top of that." For orientation: the previous building, the 18-story Bonn Center, which was blown up in 2017, was 60 meters high. At 101 meters, the high-rise on Neue Kanzlerplatz will be the third tallest building in Bonn – after the Posttower at 162 and the Langer Eugen at 115 meters.

If you step a little closer to the fence, you can look down on the Neuer Kanzlerplatz construction site, a complex of three buildings grouped around a central square. The high-rise is scheduled for completion in a year, the other two buildings this summer. The construction site is humming. Around 400 workers are on the job here every day, says the overall project manager for Kanzlerplatz. "Our aim is not only to generate space for 4,500 jobs, but also to give something back to the city of Bonn, to the neighborhood," says the 41-year-old from Bergisch Gladbach.

"We want the people of Bonn to come here on their Sunday stroll." Among other things, he is referring to the Gastrozone in the food court on the first floor of building three. The gastronomy operator from Eschborn, Food Affairs, will implement a concept of service offerings and "culinary theme worlds" here that will appeal not only to employees, but also to passersby, and to Bonn citizens in general, Leise hopes. For him, the square will be a "new urban highlight before the start of the Museum Mile. The outdoor gastronomy should also contribute to this.

Opposite, at the base of the high-rise building, there is to be a café with an outdoor terrace. The corporate coworking provider Design Offices will also set up a conference center here with space for large events for up to 600 people. Access will be through an imposing, eleven-meter-high foyer that opens onto Chancellorplatz with a huge glass front. Behind the glass façade, the architecture jumps back eight meters, making room for four mighty, conical columns that support the high-rise building - a structural masterpiece, as Leise notes: "Each column carries 6,000 tons.“

This architectural tour de force can still only be admired in the shell. But with a little imagination, one can visualise the effect of the newly emerging square: Three blocks surround it, and there are attractive views between the blocks, for example to the Gründerzeit facades on Reuterstrasse, in the direction of the Museum Mile or across Kessenich to Venusberg.

The most striking architectural feature of the New Chancellor's Square is the facade solution, whose powerful relief characterizes all three buildings in equal measure. "We are particularly proud of the façade," says Leise, "it is a three-dimensional façade, the concrete pilasters fold up, tilt forwards and backwards." This is how he describes the relief projecting a maximum of 90 centimeters, which gives the facade a honeycomb-like appearance. The actual glass facade recedes.

A glimpse of what it will look like inside can be seen in Building 2, which will be occupied by Deutsche Bank/Postbank in the second quarter of 2022. The gray carpet is already in place, the structure of the rooms - open-plan areas, marketplaces, tea kitchens, retreat rooms - is visible, air conditioning runs via concrete activation on the ceiling and ventilation systems run across the floor and walls. All spaces are variable, as Leise promises, "Like a custom suit for the tenants." A striking amount of light: which is also provided by the glass system walls around the 500-square-meter courtyard.

In a prime location, the New Chancellor's Square will ensure additional revitalization of the city beyond, one reads on the homepage, "as a trend-setting, urban development project, as a campus for the modern and inspiring working world of tomorrow and as an open place for encounters." A first impression of the construction site confirms this.

Original text: Thomas Kliemann

Translation: Mareike Graepel