The last construction project to complete Innsbruck’s new City Hall complex, built on the site of the original building, now demolished, includes a new feature, the Rathauspassage, a shop-lined entrance gallery leading to the City Hall. The new complex, now accessible from all directions, heightens the urban relevance of the City Hall.
The landmark 28 mt tower, a contemporary reference to Innsbruck’s tradition as a town of many towers, underlines the central location and role played by this community hub.
The area has three functions: a shopping mall on the ground and first levels, followed by three floors of offices and finally two residential storeys. The gallery’s glazed roof level with the first floor gives a direct view of the City Hall tower rising from the block. The intermediate floors are staggered vis-à-vis the neighbouring buildings while the two recessed top floors recall the saddle roofs of traditional local architecture and provide the apartments with sweeping views of the city.
The glazed tower rises like a glittering prism in the heart of the town, a central feature against the skyline. Its south-facing façade is protected by a full-height metal-mesh “veil”. A highly effective brise soleil, this vibrant skin combines with the use of volume and depth to create a strong architectural statement in keeping with the affluent fabric of the surrounding neighbourhood.
The outer skin is a weave of anodised gold aluminium wires (the 3.5 mm diameter wires of the warp are set at 95 mm intervals while the 3 mm diameter weft wires are 4.7 mm apart). The woven screening is 25.6 mt long and 6.5 mt wide. Its lower edge is made up of a stiff steel structure allowing elastic point-attachment to the building - mostly by means of steel plates secured to the uprights supporting the glazed wall.
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