|Vermögen und Bau Baden-Württemberg, Amt Mannheim
|GFA 770 m²
|VOF Procedure and design competition 2009, 1st prize
Heidelberg Castle numbers among the most important Renaissance buildings north of the Alps. The new visitor centre is placed next to the historical retaining wall between the gardener’s house and the former tack room, which will be converted into a restaurant to Max Dudler’s designs. Grouped as an ensemble, the three buildings now form the entrée to the castle. The new building’s architecture evolves out of the idea of the structure as a sculptural block of stone. Echoing the tack room’s construction, the walls are more than two metres thick. Here however, rather than being formed as solid masses, the walls accommodate ancillary rooms and vertical access routes for the two-floor building. The extremely deep, precisely chamfered reveals, positioned to correspond to the chosen sight lines, set up a dialogue between the new building and the monument. Visitors can also enjoy views of the castle ruins from the second-floor terrace. Both the self-supporting facade and the roof are executed in typical regional red Neckartal sandstone.