The DZ Bank Building is a mixed-use building comprised of a commercial component, housing the Berlin headquarters of DZ Bank and a residential component consisting of 39 apartments. The commercial component of the building is oriented towards Pariser Platz and the Brandenburg Gate, and the residential component is oriented towards Behrenstrasse.
Both the Pariser Platz façade and the Behrenstrasse façade are clad in a buff-colored limestone that matches the Brandenburg Gate. The façades are scaled independently from one another, so that the proportions of each are appropriate to the immediate urban area within which they each exist. The Pariser Platz façade features a series of simple, punched openings and deeply-recessed window bays, allowing the building to blend naturally into the formal urban fabric which is the setting of the Brandenburg Gate.
A glass canopy covers the main entry to the building from Pariser Platz. A high-volume foyer immediately inside the main entry offers a view into the building’s large interior atrium, which features a curving glass ceiling and a curving glass floor. A wood-clad arcade leads to the office elevator lobbies, which are located on either side of the atrium. Office spaces are organized around the atrium, and are oriented inward to take advantage of the natural light that floods through the glass ceiling.
The building’s primary conference hall is located within a highly sculptural shell in the center of the glass floor of the atrium. Clad in stainless steel on the exterior and wood on the interior, the conference room is the physical and spiritual heart of the project. Other conference functions are organized under the glass floor, at level -1, around a generous foyer. It can be combined with the Bank’s cafeteria, located under the main glass vault, to create a large space suited for banquets and assemblies.
A second, smaller interior atrium serves the residential component of the project. This atrium allows natural light to enter both sides of each apartment. A reflecting pool at the bottom of the atrium adds a dynamic quality to the light, best seen from the glass elevators that service the residential area. The apartments vary in size, from studios to maisonettes occupying the top two floors.