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Brits lose out in Berlin as Gehry scoops tower scheme

Adjaye Associates and David Chipperfield Architects have been beaten in a high-profile contest to design the tallest building in Berlin

Los Angeles based Gehry Partners was selected by developer Hines for the 300-unit residential tower in the German city.

Adjaye Associates and David Chipperfield Architects, both of which have offices in London, were among nine firms invited to take part in the contest last May.

But both failed to make the second stage of the competition, in which Gehry saw off three German practices.

The tower will be located next to Hines’ new Die Mitte building and will be the city’s first high-rise residential building in more than 30 years.

It will rise to a maximum height of 150m, and is expected to become the tallest residential building in Germany. Approximately 45,000 sq m of accommodation will range from small apartments to penthouses and even a hotel.

Hines managing director Christoph Reschke said: ‘The quality of the designs submitted was extremely high and reflected the importance of this prominent location in the centre of Berlin.

‘This place has a strong symbolic character and will develop into a metropolitan residential and retail area. In order to transform the square, we want to take a chance on something new and exceptional.’

The developer said Gehry’s design convinced the jury with its sculptural interpretation, involving rotating a number of cubes that relate to focal points in the city.

It added in a statement: ‘With its exceptional form, the building develops a completely new architectural language. In addition, the jury was enthusiastic about the harmonious design of the elevations and the stone used for the building façades.’

Gehry worked with Hines on the DZ Bank in Berlin and the New World Center in Miami Beach.

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