Construction begins on mixed use development in Jena, Germany

A recent ceremony marked the beginning of construction of ‘Sonnenhof’, a landmark development in Jena, Germay, consisting of four new office and apartment buildings, extending over multiple allotments in the city’s historical centre. The architecture firm on this project is J. Mayer. H. Architects.

Spanning approximately half of the lot, the complex is split into four separate building units, leaving a large area of open space for public use during the day. The buildings are situated at the edges of the plot, framing a small urban courtyard typical of many medieval city structures. Passages between the individual buildings connect them to the public-use areas, making it an important junction in the urban network and providing a free flow of pedestrian traffic.

A mixed-use concept was chosen in an effort to ensure that the complex slotted in seamlessly with the existing urban fabric, whilst the design of the outer buildings takes up the geometry of the polygonal shapes in the facade, continuing their graphics across the floor. Many of the resulting surfaces are extended and adapted into three-dimensional sculptural wedges, integrating such functional elements such as flower beds, ventilation openings, seating and lighting fixtures, in an attempt to transform the open areas into attractive urban leisure spaces.

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