In the competition for the station square – City Bahnhof Ulm we were confronted with a brief full of technical necessities and demanded functions such as a precisely determined street layout, bike lanes, taxi drop off’s, as well as exactly given positions of elevators and staircases for the planed garage underneath the square. Questions of spacial qualities were hardly asked in the brief. Only amenity value was a mentioned but not further described criteria for the new square.
In our competition entry we tried to focus on the ungiven, unknown, predictable and maybe unpredictable functions and programs we would expect to be located at station square with up to sixty thousand people passing every day. As a consequence we concentrated on formulating spaces and spacial elements instead of designing the pavement and the urban furniture.
As a main design element we “reintroduced” kerbs that emerge by lifting and lowering different zones on the square. The orientation of the kerbs relates to different functions, programs and structures instead of deriving from separating different types of traffic.
They formulate zones, zones of activity, inactivity, movement, ease, and zones open for multiple use.
For that the kerb is designed to serve as a border, as well as connection. It´s height marks a clear step but serves also as a linear element for sitting. Different further functions such as lighting and drainaging can be integrated in the kerb, as well as they can be extended by elements such as balustrades, rails, and other other urban accesiores.
The massive shaped base of the square allows to reduce typical functionalistic urban furniture and extends by that the diversity of possible urban programs, weather seasonal, temporary, predicted or unpredicted.
Begrenzter Wettbewerb Bahnhofvorplatz City Bahnhof Ulm / Ulm (D) / 2014
mit Konrad Wolf