Multifunction framed in steel // Isabelle Grahlke

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Isabelle Grahlke
Course of Study:
Master of Science
Stefanie Kerner M.Sc.
Prof. Christian Raabe
Prof. Rolf Westerheide
Chair of Historic Building Conservation and Research

Transformation of a gas holder into a multipurpose building and cultural center

The gasometer in Münster was built in 1953 by the company August Klönne from Dortmund as a telescopic gas container. In 2005, it was replaced by an underground gas system. Since then, the steel skeleton has stood empty. The gas tank was removed and the gas pumps were switched off. In 2003, the structure, as well as the pump house in the front part of the site, was placed under a preservation order. The gasometer in Münster is one of the few remaining structures of its kind in North Rhine-Westphalia. It plays an important role for Münster as an urban landmark and testimony to the former urban infrastructure. But also architecturally, the structure with its filigree steel framework, which reaches a height of 50 meters, is an impressive and imposing sight.

I would like to revitalize the gasometer and make it an experience for visitors by converting and extending the existing building. A cultural and event center should complement the residential and commercial area in the southeast of the city and provide the city with a multifunctional place where a diverse program can be offered: From music events and drama, to meetings, conventions and conferences, to exhibitions and private parties. The addition will be made with a new building that will be placed in the gasometer. The pump house will be converted for administration, event management and ticket sales.

The outer form of the new building radiates dynamism and movement. The sculpture grows out of the interior of the existing building and reaches for the sky. It juts out over the upper edge of the Gasometer's guiding framework and thus clearly stands out as newly inserted into the existing. [...]

Together with the listed existing building, the new construction forms the "Gasformer". The gasometer is "transformed" from a gas storage facility into a cultural and event center. Inside, a sculptural, independent object grows upwards, pushing itself off the ground with its legs until it looks out over the guiding framework. Its transformable interior allows for versatile events, large and small, which become a very special event thanks to the external backdrop of the Gasometer.

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