Brahms Kontor
Rebuilding and extension
Hamburg

  • Client: Grundstücksgesellschaft Karl-Muck-Platz GmbH & Co. KG
  • Architect: Kleffel Papay Warncke, Hamburg
  • Listed office building with underground parking garage
  • Partial demolition while retaining the facades, reconstruction, new building
  • GFA: c. 26,000 m² (reconstruction), c. 10,000 m² (new building)
  • Time: 2005 - 2007
  • Our scope: structural engineering, planning of the building pit, site supervision

The elephant is still there.

The elephant: many people in Hamburg are familiar with it. Not the ones in Hagenbecks Tierpark, Hamburg’s famous zoo, but the historic elephant sculpture at the large building complex at Johannes-Brahms-Platz opposite the Musikhalle.

But rampaging like an elephant is definitely not the right way of dealing with one of Hamburg’s protected cultural legacies, even though this project involved a complete makeover:

A new building behind an old façade, the removal and reinstallation of whole staircases, the provision of parts of the existing building with full basements for a more convenient underground garage entrance, the shoring of supports over many storeys, and the installation of completely new shafts for lifts and building services - all this mass of activity was accompanied by careful day-by-day attention to the detail of the building substance.

One can see that the building is old, but now it appears fresh and modern again, yet without making any secret of its history.

And that is why the elephant is staying where it is.