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Exterior view of the building. Credit: Arup; Exterior view of the building. Credit: Arup;

German Sport University , Cologne

Facade louvres structure symbolises the world record by Usain Bolt

The German Sport University Cologne is one of the largest sports schools in Europe and is renowned in the field of sports research. A new scientific-medical institute was established for this area. The new building consists of seven floors, five upper and two underground. It was built in a reinforced concrete skeleton construction. Arup is responsible for the structure and the fire protection as well as the facade planning and tendering in close consultation with the architects.

Earthquake-proof building

The seismic activities at the site had to be taken into account when carrying out the structural design. In order to make the new university building earthquake-proof, Arup carried out extensive dynamic investigations and developed suitable solutions. The entrance area with its two free-standing upper floors was particularly demanding: steel roof beams in the façade will support the two upper floors in case of earthmoving.

Exterior view of the building. Credit: Arup Exterior view of the building. Credit: Arup

Highlight facade design

The striking lamellar structure of the facade is immediately apparent. At a second glance, it can be seen that some of the slats are turned in different directions and appear lighter. Over the entire area, they recreated the 100 m world record print of Usain Bolt from the year 2009 in Berlin. Each floor represents a running track. The brighter surfaces symbolize the runners and their current speed. The longer a bright surface the faster the speed.