Friedrich-Ebert-Platz located near the 19th century extension city-center of Heidelberg is a traditional urban plaza covering a substantial underground parking facility. Updating the traditional square required discreetly obscuring the parking functions whilst enforcing a maximization of public space and program. Central to our design was to question and hence, to integrate the underground and the ground level plot within a functional, aesthetic.
For a good integration of parking and public life on the plaza, the drive, entrances and exits in to the garage were planned as small as possible and situated in the outer corners of the plaza, which allows for the cars to pass without disturbing passers-by or market operators. Within the scope of the underground construction, the existing square was concurrently revitalized and reformulated in a modern layout including a corresponding paving, novel furniture and planting concept.
The use of light paving composed of natural Indian sandstone, formulates a coherent layout visually connecting the surface to the adjacent historic buildings. Geometrically planted R. pseudoacacia along the West and East side orientates the view towards the wooded hills of Odenwald Forest in the South. Here, a recess in the building structure allows for a framed view of the landscape and forms a prominent reference point. Oversized wooden benches on the plaza reference this natural motive.