The town of Neu-Ulm, together with the city of Ulm, forms an expanding regional centre in the south of Germany that extends beyond the Federal State with a total of 170,000 people. The new urban building is located in the immediate vicinity of Neu- Ulm town centre. The conurbation of Ulm/Neu-Ulm is about 80 km from Stuttgart airport and about 140 km from Munich airport. The conurbation lies on the ICE express railway line from Paris to Budapest and by the Stuttgart – Munich motorway junction (A7/A8).
The form and appearance of the urban building seek to blend in with the city which developed in a grid pattern in the middle of the 19th century within the Federal fortress of Ulm founded in 1841 and at the same time to establish its independence. The primary design element of the building lays claim in its form to liberty and a new dimension for the coming development of the town. The form of the thin-format specially manufactured peat-baked clinker and the concrete window frames in a matching colour reflect the geometry of the orthogonal grid.
Besides a shop on the ground floor, the building contains the registered office of the NUWOG municipal housing society on the lower three floors. On the three upper floors are located 15 homes of different sizes and layouts. All routes within the building and the work and residential areas themselves are free of barriers. The primary structure of the buildings aims at the minimum possible fixing of structural and technical building connections. Only stairwell walls and external walls are structurally fixed. The whole structure with its walls of light construction thus allows adjustment in the long term to users’ requirements and future changes to the real estate market.
The aim of limit values below those of the low energy house standard is achieved by a very favourable volume/external surface area ratio, minimisation of heat losses through transmission by means of well heat-insulated external structural components, by component activation of the solid cladding and by a pellet heating system.
A courtyard garden on the south side of the building offers those using the building areas for resting under trees, a fountain and children’s play areas. Uncovered parking spaces with a waterproof surface in the unsealed courtyard replace an underground garage.