Refugee Welcome Center

by Tobias Matschke from Jade Hochschule Oldenburg / Jade University of Applied Sciences, Germany
Tutored by: Prof. Dr. Bruno Kauhsen, Prof. Dr. Volker Droste

Author comments:

The WelcomeCenter was enclosed by three ground floors which are oriented towards the perimeters of the square’s edge. The intersections or the new entrance gate towards extension and WelcomeCenter is complemented by an urban high point in order to respond to the adjacent buildings’ highs and to strengthen the square’s potential for enclosure. On the open lots situated further back an urban extension is intended. Buildings for commercial and administrative functions can be built here and connect with the “Alte Stadthafen” area.
The structure of building itself is oriented along the perimeters of the block opening south. Through the ring-shaped structure an interior court yard as the central point of the building is produced. The objective is to generate a space which intensifies the relation between human and culture. Moreover, the court yard is a quite zone protecting against noise.
Concerning the constructive aspects the building consists of a double-shell structure assuring insulation and light protection. The faced brickwork is filled and painted. The brink enclosure in Flemish manner contains a perforation which dissolves with increasing height. The perforation is supposed to be reflected in the prayer rooms. During the day, the translucent concrete with insulated core transports light into the interior. At night, light passed through the open binder.

Tutor comments:

The world has always been in motion. Each phase of human history is accompanied by migration triggered by existential threats such as hunger, wars, and natural catastrophes, but also by political and religious persecution and the hope for better economic conditions.
At the beginning of the 21. Century migratory flows have taken on a global dimension. Ever since the summer of 2015 cities and municipalities in both Germany and the whole of Europe are confronted with an immense societal challenge which need to be first managed on the scale of the social and the urban. It is the vocation of architecture and urban planning to predict social processes and to provide solutions for managing these transformations. All those people seeking refuge need a central location of arrival. And even those who according to the German criteria only have a right of abode require medial and therapeutic treatment. A building housing various functions responds to these needs. Here, besides general information and juridical help, migrants receive medical and posttraumatic treatment and new possibilities for the implementation of integrative measures open up.

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