Joanneumsviertel Center / Nieto Sobejano architects
© Roland Halbe

The Joanneumsviertel Center in Graz, designed by Nieto Sobejano Architects, prioritizes the urban revitalization and the exaltation of the historical heritage.

Joanneumsviertel Center Technical Information

We simply define a new pavement […] This decision favours the valorisation of the existing historical buildings […]

– Nieto Sobejano architects

Joanneumsviertel Center Photographs

Joanneumsviertel Center / Nieto Sobejano architects
© Roland Halbe
Joanneumsviertel Center / Nieto Sobejano architects
© Roland Halbe
Joanneumsviertel Center / Nieto Sobejano architects
© Roland Halbe

Joanneumsviertel Center / Nieto Sobejano architects © Roland Halbe 

Joanneumsviertel Center / Nieto Sobejano architects
© Roland Halbe

Text by the Architects

The Joanneumsviertel of Graz consists of three buildings from different eras and uses, sharing the rear facades that shaped a residual backyard: the Museum of Natural History -of the eighteenth century, the Regional Library, and the New Gallery of Contemporary Art, these last ones built in the late XIX. Different coexisting facilities belonging to the same institution raised the need to provide shared access, reception areas, a conference room, reading areas, and services, plus a lower level reserved for files and storage.

Facing the temptation of carrying out an iconic intervention, as so often has happened in recent expansions of existing museums, on the other hand, the project involved a unique opportunity to carry out an urban transformation as well as architectural. If the historic center of Graz is renowned for its expressive covered landscape, our proposal is developed on the contrary, entirely under the ground: we simply define a new pavement, as if it was like a big carpet, it occupies the entire outer area between buildings and hides underground spaces that house the required program.

This decision favors the valorization of the existing historical buildings in which is carried out a respectful restoration with its architectural features acting only occasionally in some interior areas, without affecting the original image and external volume. The continuous horizontal plane of the new square is scheduled for a combinatorial series of circular courtyards that introduce natural light into the underground spaces and harbor the entrance. The lobby, the common areas of the museum, and the library compound a meeting point to access to each one of them.

General Plan
Joanneumsviertel Center / Nieto Sobejano architects
Joanneumsviertel Center Floor Plan
Joanneumsviertel Center / Nieto Sobejano architects
Transversal section
Cite this article: "Joanneumsviertel Center / Nieto Sobejano Architects" in ArchEyes, March 8, 2016, https://archeyes.com/joanneumsviertel-nieto-sobejano/.