ROOTS in Hamburg, Germany

Picture credit: Störmer, Murphy and Partners GbR

19 storeys, 16 of which are in timber construction, are reaching for the sky as part of the ROOTS project along the Hamburg waterfront – this will be Germany’s tallest timber-built structure and one of the most impressive timber projects in the world!

The project developer Garbe Immobilien-Projekte GmbH, the German Wildlife Foundation as a client and future building-user, and the Hamburg-based architects Störmer, Murphy and Partners GbR are creating a total of 181 residential units in this exceptional new building. In addition, the first four floors will be home to exhibition spaces and offices for the German Wildlife Foundation. At this very desirable location in the HafenCity urban regeneration quarter in Hamburg’s old port area, this 19-storey timber-structure tower is not just one of the most modern living and working spaces in the city, but also one of the most sustainable! With its visible larch-wood rainscreen cladding, this design is a flagship project for timber construction in general and for sustainable building too. Thanks to the high degree of pre-fabrication of the timber structural elements, a comparatively short construction period is planned for the erection of the tower: the high-rise storeys will be built in just 12 months and should be complete before the end of 2023.

  • Construction phase: 2020-2024
  • Location: Hamburg, Germany
  • Clients: Garbe Immobilien-Projekte GmbH, Hamburg, and the German Wildlife Foundation
  • Architects: Störmer, Murphy and Partners GbR, Hamburg
  • Design of the supporting structure: Assmann Beraten und Planen, Hamburg
  • Timber construction contractor: Rubner Holzbau GmbH
  • Concrete construction contractor: Oevermann Hochbau GmbH, Münster
  • Height: Building height 73 m
  • Storeys: 19 in total, 16 of which are built with timber construction

Picture credit: Garbe Immobilien-Projekte GmbH

Picture credit: Garbe Immobilien-Projekte GmbH

Dependable protection during the construction phase with pro clima’s weather protection concept for timber components

Where other exposure-protection membranes struggle to cope with heavy rain events, pro clima’s SOLITEX ADHERO 3000 comes out on top with its reliable barrier

The ROOTS project is being built at an exposed location along the waterfront in Hamburg’s former inland river port. Around 80 km from the North Sea coast, heavy rain and strong winds are everyday occurrences – all the more reason why dependable protection against the elements is an essential part of the construction of the tallest timber structure building in Germany. The design features many timber components that will remain visible in the finished building, so stopping water penetration and avoiding unsightly water stains is an absolute must. In addition, building standards such as the German standard DIN 68800-2, which covers wood preservation, stipulate preventive measures to protect timber as early as the transport, storage and installation stages.

To meet these challenges, the building clients and project developers opted for the SOLITEX ADHERO weather protection approach from pro clima for this very special project. SOLITEX ADHERO 3000 protective membranes are installed on the structural components in the workshop, meaning these are already protected against rain and moisture when they are delivered to the building site. This covering allows any moisture that should seep into the timber, even due to unforeseen penetrations, to dry out again through the pore-free, moisture-active functional membrane. When construction is finished, the SOLITEX ADHERO 3000 membranes remain in place on the timber components.

As the tallest timber-construction building in Germany, ROOTS in Hamburg is truly a landmark project! The SOLITEX ADHERO membrane from pro clima is being used to protect the timber components from the elements during the construction period.

Bird’s-eye view of pre-fabricated timber elements

The high-quality pre-fabricated timber components are covered with SOLITEX ADHERO 3000 in the workshop. One advantage of the high degree of pre-fabrication is that the 16 storeys built using solid timber construction will be erected in just 12 months.

ROOTS is being constructed at an exposed location that will offer great views of the HafenCity waterfront quarter in Hamburg.

Reliably sealed transitions to adjacent components are of critical importance

In recent years, sprayable airtightness sealants have become established as valuable tools for sealing typical joints and transitions to achieve an airtight building envelope on timber construction projects, alongside more conventional solutions with primers and adhesive tapes. When creating seals with concrete components, liquid sealants have the particular advantages that they are quick to apply and that no pre-treatment of subsurfaces is necessary. To achieve reliable transitions, the project planners for ROOTS decided to use both of these solutions: intricate detail features are being sealed with pro clima’s sprayable AEROSANA VISCONN airtightness sealant, while the all-round TESCON VANA adhesive tape and the CONTEGA EXO sealing tape for exterior use will be used on simpler joints.

The CONTEGA EXO adhesive tape is used to seal exterior connections to be windtight and resistant against driving rain. This tape was originally developed for sealing window joints, but it fulfils its primary function of creating reliable exterior seals perfectly on this application too.

The sprayable AEROSANA VISCONN airtightness sealant is more suitable for creating reliable seals on more intricate geometries or uneven subsurfaces in a quick, cost-effective manner.

Finding solutions for major future challenges

With this project, the project developer, Garbe Immobilien-Projekte GmbH, is putting down a marker along the path to sustainable, climate-neutral urban (re)development. The overarching goal of sustainable buildings is that they should consume less resources during construction and also have longer service lives. The solutions supplied by pro clima have always been based on a philosophy of avoiding moisture damage to building structures and providing long-term protection. What’s more, pro clima products regularly achieve excellent results in independent tests for harmful substances and thus help to deliver healthy indoor air for residents and other building users. In this way, they combine the twin goals of ecological construction and creating healthy buildings. As a result of the sustainable approach behind ROOTS, this project is being supported by the German Federal Environment Foundation (DBU) and was also awarded a platinum environmental seal by the Hamburg HafenCity development authority during the planning phase.

Picture credit: Garbe Immobilien-Projekte GmbH

Find out more:

Weather protection concept for timber structures during the construction phase

On wood construction projects, timber building components have to be protected against moisture over long periods during the construction period - an overview of how this can be achieved with SOLITEX ADHERO from pro clima.

The following pro clima products were used in this project: