Zalando BHQ-Z Building by HENN


The Zalando BHQ-Z Building topped out yesterday in Berlin. HENN’s design declares the city’s identity as a global tech hub, while staying true to its Berlin roots. HENN, Zalando and HIH Invest Real Estate celebrated the topping out of the Zalando BHQ-Z Building with a small ceremony yesterday in Berlin.

BHQ-Z will complete HENN’s three-building headquarter complex for Zalando, one of Europe’s leading online platforms for fashion and lifestyle. The BHQ-X and O buildings were completed in 2019 and the BHQ-Z is scheduled for completion in 2023. The BHQ-Z Building’s distinctive voids enter a dialogue with the neighboring buildings and surrounding city

The building’s z-shaped plan is a contemporary twist on the traditional Berliner block. The interior courtyard, normally a private space, playfully shifts to the perimeter of the site to create an inviting and dynamic street-frontage. The building’s courtyards appear as excavations from the building’s massing. Wrapped in highly-transparent glass, the building’s distinctive voids enter into a dialogue with the neighboring buildings and urban context.

Martin Henn, HENN Managing Director and Head of Design: “The BHQ-Z Building is a next-generation work environment whose architecture completely dissolves the boundaries between fixed and collaborative workspaces, public and private, digital and physical. The office has become a true place of exchange.” The two spiraling atriums organize the office physically and conceptually.

The full-height atrium, located directly across from BHQ-X, is open and accessible to the public; the second atrium, which is open from the third floor to the top floor, will be used primarily by employees and collaborators. Together, they create an open and communicative space with a high-degree of visual and physical connection between the floors.

Occupants circulate through the center of the building, at the pinch point between the two voids. This area is the social heart of the building, while quieter, more secluded spaces are located along the periphery. The facade reflects the interior organization with a gradient from more traditional windows at the workstations to full-transparency at the atriums.

Raimund Paetzmann, Vice President Corporate Real Estate Zalando: “Even though, over the past two years, we’ve proven that collaboration can take place remotely, the office remains an important place of creative encounter for us. BHQ-Z, with its open character, creates an ideal setting – not only as a flexible work environment for our employees, but also as a place for collaboration with our partners.

Hans-Joachim Lehmann, Managing Director, HIH Invest Real Estate: “A property is currently being built here as part of a landmark complex in the center of the German capital. The building impresses with exceptional and modern architecture, as well as high-sustainability standards. We look forward to the long-term partnership with Zalando.

The BHQ-Z Building relies on three-dimensional space, rather than interior partitions, to create different zones of use and organize workspaces. The architecture translates the digital commons of the internet into a physical workplace, allowing for the effortless flow of information and exchange of ideas.

The design is the result of HENN’s decades of expertise designing future-oriented work environments, and the firm’s concept of Office Urbanism. Office Urbanism understands the office as a kind of micro-city; a flexible setting for a wide range of activities, with a gradient from private spaces to more public ones, enabling workers to participate in the urban life all around them. Source and images Courtesy of HENN.