Living and working in a prime location
Directly by the Elbe, a location punctuated by seven towers offering spectacular views from attractive apartments and outstanding office buildings
Seen from the Elbe bridges and Grasbrook, Strandkai quarter stands out prominently against Hamburg’s southern city silhouette. And from Landungsbrücken, together with the Elbphilharmonie, is forms the unmistakable Elbe aspect of HafenCity. The basic structure conceived by Böge Lindner architects (Hamburg) for the neighborhood is of perimeter blocks complemented by six residential towers rising 55 to 60 m plus an equally high office block.
The six to seven-story perimeter blocks feature several tower tops, as well as integrated solitaires or free-standing towers. Depending on their position, they also provide spectacular views of the River Elbe, the port, the Elbphilharmonie, Grasbrook harbor, as well as the inner city. Whereas the south-eastern end of the neighborhood opposite the cruise terminal on the Elbe mainly comprises office space for modern service businesses, residential construction dominates at Grasbrookpark, as well as on the eye-catching Kaizunge, the tip of the promontory, where all but the ground floors is reserved for living space.
In summer 2009, the first building was completed to the south of the Marco Polo Terraces: the ensemble, by Behnisch Architekten (Stuttgart), consists of an office building and a residential tower. The 25,000 m² GFA office building was in use by consumer goods group Unilever and the 1,100 employees of its German-speaking markets organization until 2020. The building’s sustainability credentials are impressive: in 2011 it was the first office building to be awarded the gold HafenCity Ecolabel. The interior of the multi-award-winning Unilever office building features an atrium flooded with natural light, open-plan offices and horizontally staggered work stations. The ground floor, with its shops and events, is a public open space accessible to the public even outside office hours, linking the Marco Polo Terraces to the newly landscaped Elbe waterfront promenade and the Elbterrassen steps. The building ensemble consisting of the almost 60m high Marco Polo Tower with its interlocked stories, and the neighboring former Unilever building with its conspicuous polygonal curtain wall façade, was one of the first HafenCity landmarks that could be seen far off. The former Unilever House is used by New Work since 2021.
Adjoining it to the east, Quantum Projektentwicklung GmbH and Engel & Völkers Development GmbH not only completed a new headquarters for Engel & Völkers in mid-2018, the perimeter block construction with a total 20,000 m² GFA also integrates a tower with 66 privately owned apartments, a building with 30 rental apartments and 6,800 m² of commercial space. Designed by the New Yorker and Pritzker prizewinner Richard Meier, a new architectonic landmark now stands to the south of Grasbrook park. This particularly intensive and sophisticated mixed-use building is in harmonious dialog with the neighboring buildings and lends character to the whole urban area.
Living on the quay point
In the area on the prominent site on Strandkai point west of the former Unilever House around 500 residences are currently being realized, among them many building-cooperative and affordable apartments. Perimeter block typologies are planned, to designs by Léon Wohlhage Wernik (Berlin), LRW Architekten und Stadtplaner (Hamburg) and BE Berlin, as well as two residential towers (about 60 m high, levelling with Marco Polo Tower), designed by Ingenhoven Architects (Düsseldorf) and Hadi Teherani Architects (Hamburg).
The developers are a joint venture comprising Aug. Prien Immobilien and DC Developments, and in the case of one building Gemeinnützige Baugenossenschaft Bergedorf-Bille and Bauverein der Elbgemeinden. Unusual cultural uses moving in at ground floor level will include the public KinderKulturHaus on about 1,000 m² plus the fairytale attraction Märchenwelt on some 3,000 m², as well as catering. The forward 93 m of the quay point will remain unbuilt – providing a new public urban space, while western HafenCity will acquire a new 700 m long striking and almost white city façade facing the Elbe, continuing through southern Überseequartier and extending over the entire central and eastern HafenCity to the Elbe bridges.