Bayerischer Rundfunk Site Development Munich-Freimann – News Center and Wave House

Bayerischer Rundfunk, Munich

Type of Competition
Restricted single phase realisation competition including an urban planning aspect

Competition 1st prize

Start of planning - Completion
2015 - 2022

Performance phases
2 - 9

Planning: Tobias Hübner, Silke Koller, Julian Stein, Melanie Kuhn, Jessica Lauterbach, Adrian Beiche, Felix Heinrich, Site management: Andreas Ullrich, Nils Freitag, Benedikt Danninger, Maximilian Baier, Sophia Forstner, Bernd Hilgers

Building Data
Total cost 141,000,000 €
Gross floor area 44,482 m²

Bavaria's public broadcasting service Bayerischer Rundfunk (BR) has decided on a trimedial course of reform, in order to prepare for the change in the media landscape. The "BR to the power of three" change process envisages merging the editorial teams dedicated to radio, television and online services.

The idea part of the urban planning competition concerned the reorganization and restructuring of the entire Freimann site of the BR in the north of Munich with offices and production areas, service building with functions hall, underground parking area, multi-story car park and kindergarten. The realization part of the competition included new construction of a trimedial news center and a multimedial wave house for BR's editorial offices, production and studio areas.
The urban design is characterized by a clear concept of three "rafts" in the landscape formed by the meadows of the river Isar, which span the "journalistic triangle". The spatial zoning of the campus arranges all functions pragmatically around a central green space with a linear ensemble of existing buildings, a chain of new buildings with wave house and news center as well as a logistics/infrastructure area.

The three-story building block with its "courtyard houses" adjoining a central main access route and its length of 190 m rounds off the media campus in Freimann to the east. Courtyards and recesses along the outer facade structure the entire complex in appropriately scaled proportions with a close relationship to the surrounding landscape.
The horizontal and vertical articulation of the façade through railing-like balconies makes the building appear light, reminiscent of elements of shipbuilding and the raft motif of the design concept.
The floor-to-ceiling glass facade of the office building creates optimal lighting conditions for multi-functional office floor plans and generous views of green spaces.
A defining element of the internal organization is a multi-story main access route, the so-called "media road", which is the core idea of the design concept, the backbone of the building structure on all three levels, to which individual use clusters are connected in a U-shape.

In the middle of the 190 m long building complex, the "media road" leads into a multi-story entrance hall, which divides the building into two structural areas: the news house in the north and the wave house in the south. An oval skylight and a sculptural spiral staircase determine the spatial atmosphere of the bright daylit space through interplays of light and shade.
From the center of the building complex, the main access route leads to the trimedial news center encompassing the field of editorial processing on one side, and to the multimedial wave house concerned with distribution by radio waves and studio production on the other.
In the center of the news house, one of the courtyards is covered with a glass roof to form a multi-story, atrium-like interior space, the so-called "newsroom". This is the central production unit where current crisis topics arrive, followed by assessment and placement by a collaboration of all the editorial teams.
At the opposite end of the "media road", the second-floor staff bistro represents a further focal use in the overall complex. Here, the main access route opens onto a spacious south-facing terrace.
Commonly used areas along the "media road", inner courtyards and terraces are places of recreation and communication for employees and meeting points for visitors.
A variety of office concepts is offered including cellular offices, group and team offices as well as open space work areas. The building's depth of 15.90 m provides a flexible floor plan with different room types and sizes that vary according to the requirements of the editorial, production and administration departments, with the potential of flexible adaptation in line with future developments.

Economic aspects, functionality, user requirements, health compatibility and comfort, architecture and ecological quality, efficient use of energy and preservation of the value of the building stock are important factors that determine planning and operation. The modular construction method used features a repetitiveness, particularly with regard to the facade, but also in the media supply system based on central utility cores. These economic construction measures offer sustainability through adaptability and changeability.