The Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg by Herzog & de Meuron and the Hearst Tower in NYC by Foster & Partners are two great building examples of how a new construction placed on top of an existing one can create a unified complex.
Hamburg: Linking the past to the future
The Kaispeicher is the original building on top of which Herzog & de Meuron placed the new building of the Philharmonic Hall. These two structures, now in perfect unity, reflect the past, the present and the future of Hamburg. Originally a harbor warehouse, the Kaispeicher was constructed in 1963 and stored thousands of heavy bags of cocoa beans until it closed in the late 1990s. Now it supports the new Philharmonic. On the one hand the original and somehow archaic feel of the harbor, on the other the sumptuous and elegant world of the Philharmonic. In between an amazing, super popular terrace, connecting them. Someone could say a “new bustling piazza for Hamburg”, certainly one with mesmerizing 360 views over the city. Making it one of the most iconic buildings designed and constructed.
New York: Eco friendly contradictions
The Hearst Tower in New York, was the first high-rise building to be constructed in the city after 2001. A true landmark, it gained rave reviews instantly. The tower, by Foster & Partners, raises on top of an art deco block in Manhattan. Two completely different architectural styles coexist in perfect harmony. The triangular form of the tower rises above the original art deco building. An impressive complex and an eco friendly idea, as it consumes 25% less energy than an equivalent office building. Lets hope that this great example of a truly innovative working environment will set the rules and inspire more to follow in the near future. Thus, creating an opportunity for an open dialog for new design opportunities.