Wirkbau Chemnitz is the former largest factory for textile machinery in Germany. It is in the process of being revitalized into a sustainable working community including start-up offices and spaces for production. The heart and center of the whole development is the 1500m2 roof garden on top of an exhibition hall which is accessible 24/7 to the whole community. People can take a break and have lunch there, but also perform outdoor meetings, lectures, events and parties.
The one-story building underneath lost its upper story due to bombings in the second world war. This fact allows for the extra load of big trees, which are positioned on top of the columns grid, rebuilding the initial story as a green hall, tracing the original structure of the building.
The trees maintain transparency on the roof level whilst offering protection from sun and views of the adjacent buildings. Each tree was carefully selected and is from a different species. They are individual characters for this place but visually connecting to the forest nearby.
The undulating pattern of paths offer various walks and create different pockets of space. Some are planted with grass to lay down, some with perennial flowers or bushes and some are filled with water bound pavement, which color is taken up from surrounding bricks, to offer space for furniture or bigger groups.
The ground is moving up and down depending on the kind of plantation and its needs. Together with the different heights of plants it forms a flowing landscape.
in collaboration with Gehrhardt Landschaft
pictures by Johannes Richter & Ernesto Uhlmann