Structural EngineerLederer Ingenieure
Building Services EngineeringIPTG EGGERICHS Sankt Wendel
Energy StrategyMüller-BBM GmbH
ArtVolker W. Hamann, Stuttgart
Text description provided by the architects. PSD Bank RheinNeckarSaar eG has built a novel Banking and Administration facility at a central position (Bahnhofstraße/ corner Sulzbachstraße) in Saarbrücken. Within the scope of a design competition , that 12 renowned architectural firms were invited to enter, have been evaluated by an independent jury of experts. The winning architecture office was Bayer & Strobel Architekten from Kaiserslautern.
The requirements were highly complex, as on the one hand the building needed to meet certain urbanistic criteria as a corner building and on the other hand the demands in terms of functionality of a contemporary Banking and Administration facility had to be realized in a cost-effective fashion. Moreover, the facility should represent the self-image of the bank in public while creating a striking impression in the center of Saarbrücken.
A building consisting of only two storey constructed in the post war period gave way to the new construction. As regards urban development the eaves height of the neighbouring building was carried over around the corner. Similarly, the colonnade as a central element of design of the Bahnhofsstraße was adopted, hence the main entrance is located there.
The indented pillar builds a smart transition to the Sulzbachstraße. 105 bored piles were needed in order to ground the new construction respectively to secure the neighbouring buildings as well as numerous pipes that proceed along the colonnades of the Bahnhofsstraße. In addition, the canalization construction of the subterranean transferred Sulzbach adjoins the PSD-Bank property that needed to be addressed.
The uniform facades are reduced to a structured grid of natural stone, filled with evenly spaced rows of windows with grey surrounds which represents the constructive pattern outwards. All two facades are punctuated by an regular grid of openings that occupy the full height of each storey.
The therefore utilized material (Gauinger Travertin) stem from the catchment area of the bank and build a lively contrast to the smooth facade-aligned fixed glazing. These alternate within a single window element with opening wings and inclined adjusted fixed glazing. Hence the facade receives depth and plasticity which is also clearly noticeable in the interior, especially in the offices. Thus the visitor can enter the window and the inclined glazing enables an unusual outlook.
The large glazing serves the optimal use of daylight and guarantees generous in/-outside views. The application of steel-made window profiles allows narrow elevation widths. The summery heat protection is ensured by triple solar control glazing combined with an internally located sun protection having a high degree of reflection immediately behind.
A central element of the interior consists of a spatially stretched foyer which covers a height of four floor. The adjoining corridors and galleries not only represent means of accessibility but rather places of encounter and communication. Diverse usage for the sake of events and activity are conceivable and receive an suitable limits. Alternating exhibitions transform the atrium to an art gallery. Currently, the atrium benefits from the installation of a video artist named Volker W. Hamann from Stuttgart. The reception furniture possess a mobile design in order to ensure highest flexibility within this area. The offices for customer consulting can be accessed directly from the foyer which create a bright and open atmosphere in the interior of the building - by means of corridor walls made of glass. The actual waiting
PSD Bank RheinNeckarSaar eG / New Office Building Saarbrücken/Germany area for customers are located in the second floor above the colonnade. From the exterior the foyer appeals as a (walkable) two-storied city-balcony in the facade. The open atmosphere in the interior is supported by the choice of material (bright walls, Jura limestone-stone floor), however contrasted by a few dark fittings as rear wall or stairways in significant black stained black furnier (oak noir). The 24 hours area with cash machine can be detached by a glass lifting wall (retractable in ground). The 5th and 6th storeys are pure office storeys, a conference room is located in the staggered floor with access to the roof-terrace and an impressive view of the city center of Saarbrücken.
In total the building reflects the self-image of the bank which on the one hand is coined by openness and transparency and on the other hand by solidity and bindingness.