Groundbreaking of the new premises of the European Central Bank in Frankfurt (DE)

The groundbreaking of COOP HIMMELB(L)AU's new premises of the European Central Bank has been celebrated yesterday in attendance of Jean-Claude Trichet, President of the European Central Bank, Petra Roth, Mayor of the City of Frankfurt, Wolf D. Prix, Design Principal and CEO of COOP HIMMELB(L)AU, the Governing Council as well as the Governors of the National Central Banks on the site of the future new premises of the European Central Bank.

EUCentral Bank

The new premises for the European Central Bank in Frankfurt, Germany.

During the ceremony Wolf D. Prix said in his speech for the groundbreaking: "The task of architecture is not only to provide a shell for functions, but through its architectural aesthetic it must also enable to establish three-dimensional cross-references in the culture of our globalized society without denying its location. The dialectic of old and new - the carefully renovated Großmarkthalle and the new ensemble of towers - will mirror this synchronicity."

Furthermore, he describes the towers as archetypes of architectural history, which are symbols and convey overview. In the case of the European Central Bank the towers are aligned on the new site in visual connection to Frankfurt's city centre and - due to their new typology with its precision and significance of form - will become an icon, a three-dimensional symbol of the European Union, Mr. Prix explained.

He describes the groundbreaking as an important and decisive moment - both for the owner and future user and for the architect. "After all, it is a moment that takes us across a threshold. The threshold from the blueprint to the building: a thought building becomes a real building."

Further groundbreaking events will take place on May 31, 2010 for the House of Music in Aalborg, Denmark and on June 18, 2010 for the Martin Luther Church in Hainburg, Austria.


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