In order to provide a new roof to the open ruin of the convent building of the Lindow monastery, the architects von Gerkan, Marg and Partners (gmp) contribute their experience in the construction of membrane roofs in a pro bono commission.
The eastern wing of the convent – which dates back to the 13th century – is still intact, while the church and cloister have been derelict for a long time. The monastery’s collegiate chapter has decided to turn this historic building monument, which is of national importance, into a venue for cultural events. To this end, the historic masonry and the vaulted basement ceiling have already been repaired and restored at considerable expense. Now gmp architects have been asked to support the monastery in its effort to construct a new roof. This contribution will be on a pro bono basis. Their first proposal: a lightweight, translucent membrane roof as weather protection, independent of the historic building substance, which keeps the convent building as a space that is open at the top, but which nevertheless protects it from wind and rain. The design blends harmoniously with the existing building fabric and will be implemented in close cooperation with the local authority for the preservation of historic buildings.
In the context of the annual international symposium on the subject of textile roofs (13 to 19 June) in Berlin, gmp is cooperating with the event organisers, Berlin Technical University, Karlsruhe University and Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences and will tutor students in a one week workshop to run concurrently. During the workshop, concepts for roofing over the convent ruin will be developed and the designs elaborated under professional tuition.
Owing to their lightweight structure and elegant shape, membrane roofs are particularly suitable in the context of historic buildings, such as in the Berlin Olympic Stadium, which was converted by gmp. These structures create appealing spaces that are flooded with light and encourage a dialogue between the old and the new, the heavy and the lightweight, the textured and the abstract, the present and the past.
The results of the workshop taking place during the “Textile Roofs” symposium will subsequently be exhibited in Lindow and presented to the local and interested professional public.
Hubert Nienhoff with Martin Glass, Lena Brögger