Architecture award for bachelor graduate Lara Breidbach

November 14, 2022

The award ceremony took place on November 3, 2022, as part of a 3-day climate festival in Düsseldorf.

Lara Breidbach's successful bachelor's thesis "Vorgesetzte Gemeinschaft - vom schlichten Bürogebäude zu einem vielfältigen und zukunftsorientierten Stadtbaustein", completed at the Institute for Design and Construction in the winter semester 2021/22, has been awarded one of four young talent prizes from the Heinze ArchitekturAWARD 2022, each endowed with €2,000. The award ceremony for the Heinze ArchitekturAWARD 2022 took place on November 3 as part of the three-day climate festival in Düsseldorf. 

Dr. Stefanie Weidner (jury, manager of the architectural office Werner Sobek in Kopenhagen, Lara Breidbach (award-winner, Uni Stuttgart), Barbara Possinke (jury, architect and managing associate RKW Architektur +) and Johanna Wörner (jury, Architects for Future). Photo: Heinze, Marcus Jacobs

Someone stands at the window of the apartment and looks down on a vacant building. "It's a shame that that building is empty. Wouldn't it be a good idea to make something of it?" Imagine it filled with life. The lights are on, and people can be seen pursuing their hobbies, or at work or simply at home. The building is full of hustle and bustle. People come and go. What was a gray and lifeless building is suddenly alive and inviting.

The "Fensterblick" (window view) design assignment issued in the winter semester of 2021/22, specified that the situation described above be applied to the vacant EnBW office building in Stuttgart's Stöckach neighborhood. Increasing land sealing and the use of existing sites are topics that are very much part of current discussions and that are likely to gain in importance in the future. The aim of the design assignment was to breathe new life into the faceless and industrial architecture of the existing post-war building, to consider what the building could look like and what different uses it might accommodate that would meaningfully improve the area around Stöckach and create added value for the residents. Lara Breidbach chose this design assignment as the topic for her bachelor's thesis and developed a remarkable architectural solution by "reusing" the existing building, equipping it with a filigree and versatile steel framework construction.

Jury justification for awarding the Young Talent Award to Lara Breidbach

In many German cities with an unsaturated housing market, office buildings are often left vacant. These are often demolished instead of being redesigned for housing, which would save materials and gray energy. Conversion concepts such as these are urgently needed as a climate-friendly approach to re-purposing existing buildings.  This project successfully transformed an office building into a communal, intergenerational residential building in Stuttgart's "New Stöckach" neighborhood. An open buffer zone for circulation, various communal and private outdoor spaces expand the living space and also provide shade to reduce heat gain. In addition to private housing, various community and public uses are also planned for the building. Furthermore, a community "operating concept" was proposed, which would involve residents making a voluntary contribution to maintaining common spaces and providing support to residents in need of assistance.

For more than ten years, the architecture and building product research database Heinze has been inviting students from German universities to submit their concepts and designs for an international award. This student competition makes the Heinze ArchitekturAWARD interesting for young architects. Students, study groups and seminar groups from German architecture faculties and departments are invited to submit designs and concepts from all areas of residential and non-residential construction. A jury determines who receives the prize for the best concepts submitted by young architects.

The projects submitted for the 2022 competition were awarded prizes by a diverse panel of experts, including architects Barbara Possinke (RKW Architektur+), Dr. Stefanie Weidner (Werner Sobek) and Johanna Wörner (Architects for Future).

Institute for Design and Construction: Prof. José Luis Moro, Dr. Franz Arlart, M.Sc. Zosine Seybold

Institute of Structural Design: Prof. Dr. Ulrike Kuhlmann, M.Sc. Lisa-Marie Gölz


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