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New Port Promenade
Hamburg, Germany

  • project New Port Promenade Hamburg
  • client LSBG ,Hamburg
  • architect Zaha Hadid Architects, London; Jan Hübener, Studio H2K, Hamburg
  • lighting designer Schlotfeldt Licht, Hamburg
  • photographer Martin Zitzlaff

The Port of Ham­burg has a new pro­me­nade in a pro­mi­nent loca­tion – the Inland Port/​Lower Port flood pro­tec­tion faci­lity bet­ween the lan­ding brid­ges in St. Pauli and the Old Ware­house Dis­trict. The promenade’s dis­tinc­tive archi­tec­ture stems from the London office of Zaha Hadid and is brought to life at night by light from a tech­ni­cal solu­tion desig­ned by Schlot­feldt Licht using LED tech­no­logy by Selux.

The flood­wa­ter pro­tec­tion faci­li­ties in the Port of Ham­burg are gra­du­ally being rene­wed, cre­a­ting urban plan­ning oppor­tu­ni­ties in defi­ning loca­ti­ons for the urban lands­cape – like at the flood­wa­ter pro­tec­tion faci­lity for Hamburg’s Inland Port /​Lower Port. Here one of the Port of Hamburg‘s most impor­tant pro­me­na­des forms a con­nec­tion bet­ween the lan­ding brid­ges in St. Pauli and the his­to­ri­cal port buil­dings of the Old Ware­house Dis­trict, which were recently inclu­ded on UNESCO‘s list of world heri­tage sites. The buil­ding sec­tion starts at Baum­wall“ in the direct vici­nity of the Elbe Phil­har­mo­nic Hall.

Ten­ders were invi­ted to meet spe­cial urban plan­ning requi­re­ments and the award-win­ning design was sub­mit­ted by the London office of the renow­ned Zaha Hadid Archi­tects. The extra­or­di­nary archi­tec­ture of the stair­ca­ses shown in the design, each con­nec­ted to the pro­me­nade in varying dimen­si­ons, ensu­res a high-qua­lity visi­tor expe­rience and aes­the­tic appeal. To enable the ligh­ting effect and light mood to effec­ti­vely com­pli­ment such archi­tec­tu­ral sophis­ti­ca­tion, Schlot­feldt Licht pro­po­sed a ligh­ting solu­tion that was not based on standard lumi­nai­res.

The light plan­ning for the flood­wa­ter pro­tec­tion faci­lity with its
pro­me­nade and stair­ca­ses is clearly sub­or­di­na­ted to the strict­ness of the archi­tec­ture. The stair­ca­ses, whose appe­a­rance is inspi­red by wash-outs in the sand, are emp­ha­sised by direct light, while the upper pro­me­nade is lit using reser­ved light. In order to rea­lise the ligh­ting con­cept, light plan­ners worked clo­sely with all invol­ved par­ties, the cus­to­mer LSBG, BSU, Vat­ten­fall (now Ham­burg Ver­kehr­san­la­gen) and Selux. The tech­ni­cal sup­port we recei­ved from Selux was a defi­ning factor in the suc­ces­sful com­ple­tion of this extra­or­di­nary pro­ject,“ explai­ned Volker Auge­ner from LSBG.

Based on the spe­ci­fi­ca­ti­ons in the design by Schlot­feldt Licht, Selux devel­o­ped a pro­ject-spe­ci­fic LED pole lumi­naire. Poles are moun­ted at inter­vals of bet­ween 18 and 40m at heights of 6.5 m or 8.5m, with each pole assig­ned to a stair­case, to which it is tilted at an incline of around 15°. All poles for a single stair­case system have a uni­form height and each pole bears six pivo­ting LED lumi­naire heads, three with bat­wing light dis­tri­bu­tion and three with flood optics, ena­bling various areas, shapes and dis­tan­ces to be illu­mi­na­ted dif­fe­rently. Each LED lumi­naire head is equip­ped with its own, DALI-capa­ble driver, ena­bling a wide vari­ety of light scenes to be pro­gram­med via the rele­vant con­trol­ler.

The highly com­pact lumi­naire heads are reces­sed into depres­si­ons in the poles, which are tape­red orga­ni­cally towards the top end; their surface cor­res­pon­ding in colour with the dark ground below. The design lan­gu­age for the light poles is based on mari­time asso­ci­a­ti­ons such as ships‘ masts, cranes or the stalks of reeds.

The way in which the stair­ca­ses inter­sect alter­na­tely in the pro­me­nade calls to mind small amp­hi­the­a­tres. Uni­form illu­mi­na­tion would have resul­ted in a sta­dium effect, which we wanted to avoid in the inte­rest of cre­a­ting a high qua­lity visi­tor expe­rience,“ explai­ned Light Plan­ner Tom Schlot­feldt. For this reason the light poles were arran­ged so that they create both bright and darker zones. The pole lumi­nai­res have already been instal­led in the first sec­tion Baum­wall” and the lumi­naire heads pro­vi­si­o­nally alig­ned.

The feed­back so far both from resi­dents of Ham­burg and tou­rists has been overw­hel­min­gly posi­tive. With its sea­ting areas, the pro­me­nade has been accep­ted as a key new visi­tor attrac­tion, to an extent that (accor­ding to ini­tial esti­ma­ti­ons) is even beyond the scope of our expecta­ti­ons,“ reports Tom Schlot­feldt. This is doubt­less also due to the light mood and the high qua­lity tech­ni­cal rea­li­sa­tion of the pro­ject, the result of which pro­ject par­ti­ci­pants are most cer­tainly highly satis­fied with.

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