In the Berlin district of Kreuzberg, between Anhalter Bahnhof and Tempodrom, the world’s tallest wooden skyscraper could soon be built.
This is reported by the “Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung” (FAZ). The ‘WoHo’ of the Norwegian architecture firm Mad Architekter is to be almost 100 meters high – and thus pass the 85-meter-high Mjøstårnet in Brumunddal, Norway. Completion is expected in 2026 at the earliest. Among other things, the building rights for the WoHo have not yet been granted.
The project is not only interesting because of the superlative. On the one hand, the WoHo impresses with sustainability. Because by using a renewable raw material and light building material, the timber construction project would have a good CO2 balance, according to the FAZ. On the other hand, the architectural office promises a social profile: the high-rise will not only be used for luxury apartments, but rather living space for every price range from poor to rich. In addition, the WoHo will offer space for both commercial and private offers, from which, as the FAZ writes, the whole neighborhood should benefit.
This is unique, the newspaper continues. Many real estate professionals have so far had two objections to such socially diverse projects. On the one hand, the different living environments could not be reconciled, according to the opponents. On the other hand, the construction costs would rise rapidly from a construction height of 30 meters – which only luxury apartments make possible.
“Diverse housing estate” in 150 units
However, property developers and architects have something else in mind when it comes to WoHo. The aim is to “bring the Berlin mix into the vertical”, says client Thomas Bestgen to the FAZ. Of the 18,000 square meters, 60 percent would be used for living. 150 units are to be created from this in this “diverse housing estate” (Bestgen) – a third of which is rent-linked with a square meter rent of 6.50 euros. Another third is intended for cooperative living, the rest as condominiums. In addition, there will also be other forms of living, such as assisted living for young people and people with dementia. The price classes will not be divided by floor or area, but rather a mix.
Instead of a restaurant, for example, a school canteen could be built on the non-residential areas, which could also be used as a neighborhood canteen or for neighborhood cooking. There will also be an after-school care center, a day care center and rooms for art and culture. The lower floors, a roof terrace and an indoor playground should be open to the public. There will also be semi-public areas.
The concept must first prove itself in practice, said Thomas Bestgen to the FAZ. But it could be just right for many people.