The Stuttgart 21 project is a proposal for a new train station as well as an urban development plan. The municipal planning authorities of Stuttgart and the German Railways commissioned an urban planning brief and invited ten architectural firms to respond to this brief as well as present ideas for a site adjacent to the existing station. With the ultimate goal of attracting more rail users, the brief sought a comfortable station with an efficient infrastructure and an abundance of natural light integrated with the urban fabric of Stuttgart.
In response to the brief, EEA’s design proposes a new station typology whose public presence is defined by a large glazed roof that functions as a public space at ground level. The glazing has an ambiguous appearance by being etched with a stone pattern. This allows ample natural light to penetrate the station whilstappearing as a solid surface at ground level. The new public square is the heart of the urban planning proposal for the whole area.
The proposal includes a hybrid use of combined offices, shops and housing which is unusual for Germany. The plan is a combination of the standard rectilinear grid and roads that follow the topography, and includes generously wide boulevards that function as linear parks. To enhance the vibrancy of the plan, the functions were mixed and the rigid controls removed. The intention of the design is to contribute a contemporary response to the city condition; one that celebrates the city’s dynamic and understands that a modern city’s attraction lies in a layering of forms, structures, and uses.