The Upgraded Façade of Commerzbank Düsseldorf
Keywords:facade renovation, reuse, retrofitting, aluminium curtain wall, Josef Gartner GmbH, modern building heritage conservation
The post-war building stock is increasingly being transformed. Even at objects protected as listed heritage, renovation usually results in a high degree of material exchange and replacement. This is especially the case in regard to historic curtain wall constructions. Based on the case study of the Commerzbank High-rise and original planning documents by Gartner, the paper focuses on the applied strategy of disassembling and reassembling the curtained aluminium sandwich elements, and the resulting upgrading of the original façade with a newly installed interlayer for insulation. The paper discusses the possible transfer of this strategy, which largely depended on the existing high quality of the aluminium components, their corrosion-resistant properties and low weight. The case study of the former Commerzbank High-rise indicates that a long-term preservation of post-war modern building stock can be achieved without wholesale replacement of original building components. The reuse of existing materials and components represents a promising approach.