MVRDV Converts Film Studios in Berlin into a Mixed-Use Campus

MVRDV announced plans to adaptively reuse Berliner Union Film Ateliers’ (BUFA) buildings, and was granted planning approval. This project broadens the site’s scope to include all creative industries and organisations involved in activism and justice. MVRDV proposes several sustainable transformations to existing structures that build on the site’s history and spatial diversity. This reflects the adaptive reuse philosophy.

Courtesy of MVRDV

“Repurposing existing buildings and adapting them to meet the evolving requirements of our urban environments.” is the concept, according to Clive Nichol, Fabrix CEO. BUFA is located at the Tempelhof Airport’s southern edge. It has been an integral part of Berlin’s film- and television industry for more than 100 years. The masterplan proposes incremental redevelopment by adaptive reuse of existing structures and ecological transformation of landscape.

Courtesy of MVRDV

Atelier Gardens, which focuses on social causes, helps to create a new vision of society and encourages more people to share that vision. We extend the life span of this significant piece of Berlin film history by transforming it. This allows us to connect an exciting future with a past that was. Jacob van Rijs, MVRDV founding partner

The first of two buildings to be renovated is a film production facility, which has been abandoned for modern uses. The plan aims to maximize interior space flexibility while not altering the heritage buildings’ defining features, thus increasing the structure’s lifespan. A curtain rail is used to create the main focal point of the space and define it. This gesture increased the space’s flexibility and created a contrast to the existing building. A green wrap of climbing plants and wooden frames is added to the more recent House 1. Flexible workspaces, a cafe-bar and meeting areas will be available in the structure.

Courtesy of MVRDV

Large pavements will be eliminated, increasing water permeability and eliminating vehicles. The project also encourages biodiversity through green plazas and rooftop gardens. The design also considers the possibility of using salvaged steel from two former warehouses as a foundation for a new entrance pavilion. Through a series pilot projects, the programmatic framework and direction of development for the BUFA campus are still being defined. This will create a feedback loop between the users and the community. The next stages of the development plan will expand the functional landscape to include other sectors, such as film and education.

Courtesy of MVRDV
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