LAVA's sculptural and sustainable energy tower breaks ground in heidelberg
 

LAVA's sculptural and sustainable energy tower breaks ground in heidelberg

international studio LAVA has broken ground on an energy storage tower in southwestern germany. the project seeks to transform a cylinder-shaped water tank into a dynamic sculpture to serve as a new landmark for the city of heidelberg. fully open to the public, the structure — which is due for completion by mid-2019 — will provide information on sustainable power and renewable resources. solar and wind energy generated on site will be used to heat up the water inside the tower, which will then be sold.

LAVA energy storage tower
all images courtesy of LAVA, sbp, A24, WHITEvoid

 

 

commissioned by energy company stadtwerke heidelberg, LAVA’s design replaces the site’s gas tank — a symbol of energy policy from the 1950s. referencing geometric forms found in nature, the building’s multi-layered façade sits in front of an insulating layer of mineral wool panels in different shades of blue. a spiral staircase, positioned on the outside of the tower, rises dramatically to the top of the structure.

LAVA energy storage tower
the project will transform a cylinder-shaped water tank into a dynamic sculpture

 

 

the outer façade comprises a network of cables and approximately 11,000 diamond-shaped plates of stainless steel, which rotate in the wind. this constantly evolving envelope changes appearance depending on the season or time of day as waves of light and motion glide across its surface.

LAVA energy storage tower
a spiral staircase rises dramatically to the top of the structure

 

 

at night, the inner envelope is illuminated with blue, green, and white LEDs mounted below the stairs. from ground level, two elevators take visitors to event spaces on the roof, while a small restaurant and open-air terraces offer views across the city from the top of heidelberg’s new tallest building.

LAVA energy storage tower
open-air terraces offer views across the city

 

 

 

project info:

 

name: energy storage centre
location: heidelberg, germany
client: stadtwerke heidelberg (SWH)
status: breaking ground 2017, completion due mid-2019
size: diameter 25m; height 56m; capacity 19,500m3/40MW); total park site 10,000 sqm

 

general planners: LAVA and wenzel+wenzel
architecture: LAVA (tobias wallisser, alexander rieck, chris bosse with christian tschersich, christina ciardullo, courtney jones, anastasyia vitusevych, roger winkler with wenzel+wenzel (matias wenzel, reinhold blersch, diane gramb-lang); competition team: julian fahrenkamp, angelika hermann)
structure: schlaich bergermann sbp, stuttgart (knut stockhusen, rudolf bergermann, jörg mühlberger, daniel gebreiter)
landscape design: A24 landschaft berlin (steffan robel, maren jeschke, daniel angulo-garcia
climate engineering: transsolar, stuttgart
kinetic façade: WHITEvoid, berlin
façades: priedemann GmbH, berlin
MEP: IBH, frankfurt
building physics: CAPE, esslingen
image credits: LAVA, sbp, A24, WHITEvoid

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