Stuttgart. On July 30, 2004, the board of Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG, Stuttgart, gave the green light to one of the most spectacular projects in the company's history. Now the dice are cast: the Delugan Meissl architect's office of Vienna will build the new Porsche Museum in Zuffenhausen. The Austrians' design won the architects' competition, in which Porsche invited ten renowned architect's offices from Germany, Austria and Switzerland to take part. A total of 170 European architect's offices had made a bid for this project. Construction work on Porscheplatz will commence later this year. The cost of the new Porsche Museum, which is to be opened in 2007, amounts to approximately 50 million euros.
In the words of the Delugan Meissl architects in the explanatory statement that accompanied their design: "The new Porsche Museum will create a space that will lend architectural expression to the company's self-confident stance and high standards and will at the same time take account of Porsche's vitality. Knowledge, credibility and purposefulness are as much a part of the philosophy as courage, enthusiasm, power and independence. Every idea is perceived as a chance to actively set oneself new challenges, sound out new frontiers and nevertheless remain true to oneself. All of this is to be reflected in this museum."
Quoting from the selection committee's decision: "Delugan Meissl's proposal is impressive due to its attempt to redefine the Porscheplatz area. This is achieved in an urban sense by a sculptural gesture on a grand scale, and internally by the museum's expressive setting. The exhibition space, which is terraced by long flights of steps, is recessed, and its circular design lends itself to beneficial flexible use."
Porsche AG CEO, Dr. Wendelin Wiedeking, reacted enthusiastically to the Austrians' design: "This design is innovative, modern and challenging. It is sure to be provocative too, but that was also one of the aims. With this new development we will create an architectural highlight at our parent plant in Zuffenhausen, which will shine out well beyond the borders of Stuttgart." Wiedeking expects the number of visitors to the museum to increase from the current 80,000 a year to significantly over 200,000.
The Mayor of Stuttgart, Dr. Wolfgang Schuster, was also delighted with the result of the architects' contest: "Following on from the Haus der Geschichte, the new art museum on Kleiner Schlossplatz and the Mercedes-Benz-Museum in Untertürkheim, we are now getting a fourth museum in the space of only a few years. The design from the Viennese architect's office represents an attractive portal not only for Porsche, but for Stuttgart as a whole."
From 2007 on, the new Porsche-Museum will be perceived as a detached and dynamically formed monolithic body, which appears to hover above the ground and the first-floor level. This body will contain the exhibition area of approximately 5,000 m² and create space for "Experiencing the Porsche Cosmos". The first floor contains the entrance area, which not only acts as a foyer and starting point for guided tours, but also allows interesting insights into the workshop for historic vehicles and the archive.
The foyer of the exhibition area contains the history of the firm up to 1948. From there, the visitor can move straight on to the main exhibition area – represented by the chronologically arranged post-1948 product history as well as the respective 'theme islands' (including, among other things, Targa Florio, Prototypes, The 917 Era, Le Mans and Evolution 911). Whereas some 20 historic vehicles can be displayed in the current museum, the new museum will allow the public to feast their eyes on around 80 vehicles.
The new Porsche Museum will also contain a museum shop, a visitors' restaurant, a coffee bar and an exclusive restaurant with a large roof terrace. More than 300 parking spaces will be available in the underground garage. The building can also be used for large events, such as vehicle presentations, customer events or press conferences.
Porsche AG will award Delugan Meissl 25,000 euros for its winning design. There are also cash prizes for Staab Architekten of Berlin (2nd place, 19,000 euros), Allmann Sattler Wappner of Munich (3rd place, 12,000 euros) and Lamott-Wittfoht of Stuttgart (4th place, 7,000 euros). The following offices also competed: Bottega + Erhardt (Stuttgart), Friedrich Poerschke Zwink (Munich), Dinse Feest Zurl (Hamburg), Morger & Degelo (Basel), BKK3 (Vienna) and Wandel Hoefer Lorch + Hirsch (Saarbrücken).
The selection committee, lead by the architect Professor Fritz Auer (Stuttgart/Munich), comprised six practical and seven expert judges. In addition to Mayor Wolfgang Schuster and Porsche boss Wendelin Wiedeking, the practical contingent was formed of the director of the Stuttgart city gallery, Professor Dr. Christian von Holst, Porsche board members Harro Harmel and Hans Riedel, and the Director Corporate Communications, Anton Hunger. As well as Professor Auer, the specialist judge team included Professor Hannelore Deubzer (Berlin/Munich), Professor Hilde Léon (Berlin/Hanover), Professor Volkwin Marg (Hamburg/Berlin), Professor Boris Podrecca (Vienna/Stuttgart), Professor Wolfgang Schwinge (Stuttgart) and architect Andreas Ramseier (Zurich). Karsten Kümmerle, a representative of the Baden-Württemberg chamber of architects, was also involved the competition.
In October 2004, the new Porsche Museum was promoted as a single-tier realization competition for ten invited participants, and conducted as a cooperative, open process. Following an introductory event, a colloquium took place in December 2004, at which the architect's offices had the opportunity to present their concept and the actual progress of their design to the judges. On January 31, 2005, the final decision on the participants' designs was made.
All ten competition entries will be on show to the public from February 23 to March 6, 2005 in the Haus der Wirtschaft in Stuttgart (opening times: 11 am to 6 pm).
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