Award-winning sustainability: SKAIO wins 2021 German Sustainability Award for Architecture

Foto: Bernd Borchardt
Foto: Bernd Borchardt

Germany’s most renowned architecture award for sustainable buildings goes to the SKAIO timber high-rise in Heilbronn. ZÜBLIN Timber and ZÜBLIN’s Stuttgart subdivision (Heilbronn business unit) constructed the 34-metre-tall building using hybrid-timber construction.

The jury praised the ten-storey building as a lighthouse project for the efficiency of urban timber construction: “A striking feature of this project is that it does not settle for the familiar, instead experimenting with what is recognised as being useful. The insights gained from the project have directly informed the development of state legislation in Baden-Württemberg on the use of wood as a construction material in high-rise buildings.” The jury’s detailed statement can be found here: https://www.nachhaltigkeitspreis.de/architektur/sieger/skaio/

SKAIO, for the most part a residential building, was the highest timber high-rise in Germany at the time of its completion in 2019. The building was constructed for the Federal Horticultural Show in Heilbronn as part of an ambitious brownfield revitalisation carried out in combination with an urban development project and other innovative construction ventures. SKAIO therefore does not stand on its own but is part of a comprehensive future-oriented urban development concept: compact, space-saving and – as a result – affordable; with a carefully devised mix of uses and users and intelligent layouts in the residential units. All with the aim of testing the limits of what is feasible in timber construction.

The walls and ceilings of the high-rise building are made of wood, which makes up the majority of the building. Only the base floor and the staircase are made of reinforced concrete, while the façade is clad with aluminium panels on the outside. For further structural information about SKAIO, see our reference.

The German Sustainability Award for Architecture is being presented for the eighth time together with the German Sustainable Building Council (DGNB) and with the support of the Federal Chamber of German Architects, the Association of German Architects, the Baukultur Foundation and the producer of building paints Caparol. The award recognises outstanding achievements in construction that contribute to sustainability in everyday life and in business and which demonstrate enormous innovative power and quality of design.

Source: Press release “Das sind die Sieger des Deutschen Nachhaltigkeitspreises 2021” [“These are the winners of the 2021 German Sustainability Award”] https://www.nachhaltigkeitspreis.de/presse/pressemitteilungen/news/das-sind-die-sieger-des-deutschen-nachhaltigkeitspreises-2021/