ST 2018 | Birker Bad SolingenCopyright: © Sina Wolpert
Conversion of the "Birker Bad" in Solingen
Master's Thesis by Sina Wolpert
This design work deals with the conversion of the listed "Birker Bad" in Solingen. The aim was to develop a concept that would do justice to the historical significance of the empty bath as the first municipal bathing establishment and Solingen's formerly most frequently used cultural and leisure facility.
The design "Kulturbecken am Birkenweiher" takes up the complex and conglomerate character of the bath. A heterogeneous range of uses was integrated with an open stage and event, gastronomy, co-working, creative workshops, seminars and conferences, rehearsal rooms and sound studio.
The architectural concept consists of integrating a reversible structure into the Birker Bad, which reacts strongly to the building in its rhythms and yet still follows its own language. Natural spruce wood, an ecological and sustainable material, offers the building material for this, whereby it continues the material palimpsest of the bath. The vertical wooden structure is always used as a nobilitating and connecting element at special points in the indoor pool as well as on the façade. In particular, the former indoor swimming pool - now an event hall - is staged. On the other hand, there are areas that have been left untreated and in which large parts of the original materiality have been preserved. The central design element is a pergola, which visually combines the heterogeneous building complex and at the same time functions as a meeting place.