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  7. Refurbishment Philips-Haus / Josef Weichenberger architects + Partner

Refurbishment in Architecture

presented by the MINI Clubman

Refurbishment Philips-Haus / Josef Weichenberger architects + Partner

  • 19:00 - 26 January, 2019
  • Curated by Paula Pintos
Refurbishment Philips-Haus / Josef Weichenberger architects + Partner
Refurbishment Philips-Haus / Josef Weichenberger architects + Partner, © Leo Fellinger
© Leo Fellinger

© Leo Fellinger © moodley brand identity, Tina Herzl & Julian Mullan © moodley brand identity, Tina Herzl & Julian Mullan © Leo Fellinger + 16

  • Structural Engineer

    DI Markus Kuhlang ZT GmbH
  • Building Physics

    ENICON eco-energy consulting GmbH
  • HVAC Engineer

    Mahr & Partner GmbH
  • Electrical Engineer

    Mahr & Partner GmbH
  • Plot Area

    13.760 m²
  • Effective Area

    15.700 m²
  • More Specs Less Specs
© Leo Fellinger
© Leo Fellinger

Text description provided by the architects. Philips Haus – an icon of 1960s modernism – forms a welcoming gesture on the southern entrance to the city of Vienna. Although dwarfed by nearby Wienerberg City, it continues to make an impact more than fifty years after its completion. Its shape and anatomy remain distinctively unique, leaving behind an architectural afterglow in the eyes of the thousands of motorists that drive by every day. Philips Haus still conveys the visionary spirit of its designer, renowned Viennese architect Karl Schwanzer.

© moodley brand identity, Tina Herzl & Julian Mullan
© moodley brand identity, Tina Herzl & Julian Mullan

Originally conceived as the Austrian headquarters of Philips, it was opened in April 1965, after 4 years of construction starting in late 1961. Philips Haus showcases a particularly unique construction. It rests on 4 slender reinforced concrete pylons, prominently visible on its facades. Between those – and cantilevering beyond them considerably – span more than 70 metres long prestressed concrete beams. Two per floor, spaced 14m deep, connected by a minimized secondary floor and beam construction. As a result, the individual floors seem to rest between the primary pylons like a stack of shelves inserted through a pair of ladders. The centre-span of the longitudinal beams measures 39 meters, its cantilevers 16 meters on each side. A 76-meter-long, three-storey podium, sits off -centre underneath the high-rise slab. Both volumes are interconnected through a shared vertical circulation core.

© Leo Fellinger
© Leo Fellinger
Section
Section
© moodley brand identity, Tina Herzl & Julian Mullan
© moodley brand identity, Tina Herzl & Julian Mullan

Approximately 50m in height, the building is a masterpiece of structural engineering. Responsible for its structure was legendary Austrian engineer Robert Krapfenbauer in cooperation with the Munich fi rm Dyckerhoff & Widmann. A column-free plan allowed for the first open-space off ices in Austria in the 1960s, and today provided an ideal starting point for a sustainable refurbishment of the Philips Haus. Its open, interrupted layout facilitated a great variety of adaptations: from loft to micro apartment, all possibilities for conversion into contemporary forms of housing could be exploited. The result might be called a ‘vertical village’, composed from serviced apartments, supermarkets, restaurants, fitness club, parking and a future connection to the new U2 underground metro line.

© Leo Fellinger
© Leo Fellinger

Nine standard floors of the high-rise contain 135 serviced apartments which range in size from 30 to 46 m2. As future investments they are not intended for immediate personal use, but will be rented on a daily to monthly basis, fully furnished and supported by hotel-like infrastructure. Every apartment affords impressive views over the city, or southward across Lower Austria and to the Schneeberg. A truly magnificent 360° vista can be experienced from the 12th floor penthouse.

© moodley brand identity, Tina Herzl & Julian Mullan
© moodley brand identity, Tina Herzl & Julian Mullan
Type floor plan
Type floor plan
© moodley brand identity, Tina Herzl & Julian Mullan
© moodley brand identity, Tina Herzl & Julian Mullan

Revitalisation of the building was carried out in close coordination with the historic preservation authorities, as since 2010 the façade, structure and circulation cores had become registered monuments. Reconstruction of the aluminium ribbon windows received particular attention and was subtle reinterpretation of Schwanzer’s original façade from the 1960s – which did not survive into the 21st century and had been replaced a few times.

© Leo Fellinger
© Leo Fellinger

A terrain modification from the 90ies could be undone, and the southern side re-established with its landmark panoramic window. Hence the podium would again – as intended by Karl Schwanzer – appear to be hovering above a slightly setback ground floor. Philips Haus became PhilsPlace, and thus - not least through its name - the original concepts and spirit of the building live on.

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Cite: "Refurbishment Philips-Haus / Josef Weichenberger architects + Partner" 26 Jan 2019. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/909907/refurbishment-philips-haus-josef-weichenberger-architects-plus-partner/> ISSN 0719-8884

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