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Dom-Römer-Areal

Urban revitalization of the Dom-Römer complex


Urban development plan

District:




Completed:
2015

Reason for planning

The lively civic debate on the redevelopment of the Dom-Römer complex culminated in a resolution by the Municipal Council that fundamentally reestablished the architectural character of the erstwhile historical heart of the city. 

Planning district

The development zone, which measures approx. 7,000 square meters, spans the premises of the erstwhile Technisches Rathaus as well as the archaeological garden, which forms the historical seedbed of the City of Frankfurt.

Planning objectives

The redevelopment of the zone between the Cathedral and the City Hall is destined to establish a vibrant urban quarter that takes its cue from the old heart of Frankfurt, which was destroyed in the War. The area located between Frankfurt’s Medieval town hall, the St. Bartholomäus Imperial Cathedral and Kunsthalle Schirn art museum form the historical seedbed of the city, built as early as Roman times. The centuries that followed shaped a district characterized by multiple uses, a high density of buildings, superb designs, narrow lanes, and cozy squares and courtyards. Up until its destruction in World War II, the quarter’s Medieval structures and parcels had been preserved along with its typical mix of half-timbered houses and the stone houses of the town’s leading nobility. The construction of the oversized Technisches Rathaus in the 1970s was a conscious move away from the small-parcel layout and diversity that had previously characterized the site. The decision to demolish the Technisches Rathaus and redevelop its grounds offered a unique opportunity to reestablish the spatial quality and urban character of the historical heart of the city in tandem with the citizens of Frankfurt. 

Project progress

The urban development competition in 2005 sparked a lively local civic debate on the redevelopment of the Dom-Römer complex. To involve as many Frankfurters as possible in the project, in fall 2006 the City Planning Department organized a planning workshop attended by some 60 Frankfurt citizens. In September 2007, a majority on the City Council adopted the development plans as formulated on the basis of the workshop. Archives and storage rooms were searched for relevant documents that provided a basis for the potential reconstruction of individual houses. In 2009, the City of Frankfurt established the Dom-Römer GmbH to handle planning and development activities. A public building will be erected on a platform over the archaeological garden, which is of great historical significance, in order to define the space in front of the cathedral’s spire. To this end, an architectural competition was held in 2009 and the design proposed by Meurer architects for a so-called townhouse selected. The building plans must comply with the Municipal Design Statutes, which came into effect in 2010, and the opinion of the City Planning Council, which took up office at the same time. The Technisches Rathaus was demolished in 2010. In spring 2011 the results of the architectural competition for the 30-odd buildings were presented. At the end of 2011, the decision was made to establish an additional 15 buildings modeled on historical antecedents. In January 2012, the foundation stone was laid for the quarter and by the end of the same year the basements for the new buildings had been completed. Construction of the townhouse commenced about one year later, with renovation work on the underground carpark was completed after a further few months. In early 2014 the new subway station exit was inaugurated and the topping-out ceremony for the new townhouse held in fall 2014. Work on the remaining buildings commenced shortly thereafter, namely in December 2014.

 

Information on the project published by the City Planning Department