Germany, Hanover 

EXPO Hall 8/9


Competition 1997 – 1st Prize
Design Volkwin Marg and Jörg Schlaich
Project managers Torsten Hinz, Marc Ziemons
Project team Ahmet Alkuru, Matthias Holtschmidt, Stephanie Joebsch, Knut Maass, Stefan Nixdorf, Thomas Schuster, Andrea Vollstedt
Architect on site Harms und Partner, Hanover
Structural engineers schlaich bergermann und partner, Stuttgart
Client Deutsche Messe AG, Hanover and Expo 2000 GmbH, Hanover
Construction period 1998–1999
Volume hall 8 100 m x 120 m x 8.7 m
Volume hall 9 137 m x 240 m x 26 m




Heiner Leiska

Juergen Schmidt

[email protected]

A hall of 137 by 240 m is spanned by a column-free suspended steel construction, almost exclusively subjected to tension, which is a structural first in this form resulting in extreme material minimization.

The new building completed in only ten months replaces the old exhibition halls 8 and 9 in the same location, which didn’t comply with the latest standards anymore. The artificially illuminated Hall 8 with an accessible roof surface simultaneously connects stairs and bridge towards the Expo Plaza and forms a link towards the "Avenue of United Trees".

Hall 9, light-flooded from all sides, is spanned column-free by a five-nave, seemingly hovering roof construction over 105 m. The five main girders are constructed like suspended bridges, with supporting cables, vertical suspension hangers, trestles as masts and one thick circular section as compression bar each. This bar section with a diameter of almost 70 cm has been lifted to the intended height in two halves of 70 m each and placed on the trestle joint. The actual load-bearing system for the roof surfaces is provided by suspended struts from flat steel with counter-curved stabilizing cables.

The light-weight roof surface, consisting of wooden boxes, houses all tech- nical distribution installations including ventilation, its vertical connection to the technical centre being formed by glazed shafts.