The large central window of the building displays the activities of the busy publishing house and offers the employees a direct view of the world they describe. This creates an active dialogue between the pulsating activities of the building and city life.
In his speech at the topping-out ceremony, architect Louis Becker, Director and Partner in Henning Larsen Architects, emphasised that “the ambition has been to design more than just an office building. Spiegel’s new HQ is a building that really gives something back to city. As an architectural and sustainable icon, the building reflects the profiles of Spiegel as well as HafenCity and, in interaction with its surroundings, it provides Hamburg with a new, vibrant urban space.
The project consists of two separate building volumes – comprising the offices of Der Spiegel and Ericus Contor, respectively – whose location on the site creates two consistent urban spaces. A square in front of the volumes constitutes the shared arrivals area of the two offices and a large public square is oriented towards the river, the view and the sun.
The assignment is the result of an international architectural competition won by Henning Larsen in 2007. The new headquarters will be ready for inauguration in the summer of 2011. The building has already been nominated for a gold medal in HafenCity – in connection with a new award scheme recognising the development of sustainable buildings in Germany.