An open building as an expression of a modern corporate philosophy: With this idea, the KZA team has taken second place in a competitive design process organized by Volksheimstätte, a housing association based in Göttingen. The architects designed a new office building with adjoining living space.

The design envisages a three-storey building that responds optimally to the location. On the way into the city, it sets an unmistakable prelude. The property to be developed is located on Kasseler Landstraße, the main traffic artery between the A7 motorway and Göttingen city centre.

The central contact point is the new customer centre. It has a spacious reception area on the ground floor. Open corridors already allow a view into the green inner courtyard, the actual heart of the complex. It is surrounded by administrative areas and a total of 14 barrier-free apartments. The latter serve as a substitute for the currently existing residential buildings from the 1960s, which are to give way to the new building. Generously glazed stairwells connect the two new parts and make life in the inner courtyard visible from all sides.

Spontaneous meetings in the inner courtyard

In the inner courtyard, there are also so-called “Third Places”, which invite to spontaneous meetings and conversations in the staircase with a view outside. The courtyard thus becomes an inner haven of peace for everyone in the building – whether just looking in or staying there. Corresponding furniture makes breaks as well as working outside possible.

Open-mindedness towards tenants and customers

In this way, the concept illustrates a central principle of the Volksheimstätte: the company’s declared aim is to signal the greatest possible openness towards customers and tenants even in its external appearance. The KZA team’s design meets this requirement in two respects: while the building faces the city on the one hand, it also creates an impression of openness and transparency on the inside. Depending on the client’s wishes, the residential buildings can be constructed in either conventional or modular construction.

The Volksheimstätte employs about 30 people. The housing cooperative currently has around 2,500 residential units in its portfolio and also manages around 1,500 additional apartments held by other owners.