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Commerzbank Frankfurt; Commerzbank Frankfurt;

Commerzbank, Frankfurt

World’s first ecological high-rise, completed in 1997

Arup provided structural engineering services for the 53-storey Commerzbank tower in the financial district of Frankfurt am Main. Rising to around 300m, it was Europe’s tallest building up until 2005.

In addition Arup provided consulting services regarding traffic and wind studies as well as geotechnical and fire engineering and up to scheme design stage.


The building has a natural ventilation system with individually openable windows as well as transverse ventilation through the "sky gardens" and the atrium. Thanks to its eco-friendly design the building was branded "Eco high-rise".

This new high-rise building is triangular in plan. The layout of the floor levels creates a helix with 4-storey high cut-outs, creating space for landscaped terraces, called "sky gardens". Together with the central, 200m high atrium, the sky gardens maximise the use of daylight the sky gardens and provide for unique views through the building.

Project Summary

35storey building

200mhigh atrium

50mpiled foundation


To minimise settlements of the tower it is founded on a 50m piled foundation. The steel structure – up until then unique in Germany – consists of a perimeter tube made of Vierendeel-trusses. The 400m2 office floor petals are supported on 13cm thick steel-composite slabs.

The service cores are integrated into building edges formed by the structural steel-composite mega-columns.