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ANC Arquitectos with Christian Gänshirt, architects
Porto / Berlin 2005

We propose a banal solution without new ideas or strong images: a strategy of small steps, a slow architecture. Berlin’s centre has been kept hostage by a vicious circle of symbolic violence, which can only be broken through a moratorium on destruction.

The city needs a connection between the Baroque and Classicist city and the city of open public spaces. We propose to preserve, but transform the structure of the Palace of the Republic. Along its south-western façade, a new structure will be added, tracing the volume of the former castle. These architectural measures would set up a slow development process, which will lead to the eventual consolidation of the new complex.

The centrality of the site demands urbanity that is open to the future. Like no other city, Berlin symbolises the division of Europe. We propose the creation of a forum that will be devoted to the meeting of Eastern and Western Europe. On the site of the present square, a vast roof structure will shelter a new public space with diverse programmes, fostering the interaction between different cultural and social groups.


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