Zaha, Gehry and Herzog & de Meuron lose out

David Chipperfield Architects is the only British practice still in the running to design a new concert hall for Munich.

The firm’s Berlin office was awarded third place in an international design contest which involved big names such as Frank Gehry, Herzog & de Meuron and Zaha Hadid Architects.

The Munich KonzertHaus competition was won by Austrian practice Cukrowicz Nachbaur Architekten, but all five prize winners will now be invited to negotiations with the client and any one of them could be picked to design the final building.

The state construction office is expected to announce the results of these discussions within the next two months.

Cukrowicz Nachbaur picked up €125,000 from an overall prize fund of €500,000.

Second prize went to Hamburg’s PFP, while Chipperfield was placed third. Danish architect 3XN came fourth and fifth place went to Berlin’s Staab.

Honourable mentions went to Zaha Hadid, Christ & Gantenbein, Mecanoo and Henning Larsen.

The invited longlist included Frank Gehry, Herzog & de Meuron and Snøhetta as well as German firms GMP and Schultes Frank Architekten. Other participants included Jean Nouvel and Christian de Portzamparc.

The organisers said the 25-strong jury’s decision to pick Bregenz-based Cukrowicz Nachbaur was all-but unanimous, with only one vote against after two days discussing 31 entries. The judges included Harry Gugger and BIG’s Kai-Uwe Bergmann.

Jury chairman professor Arno Lederer said the first-placed design was both “restrained and expressive”.

Interior and construction minister Joachim Herrmann said: “It was a difficult choice for all of us. There are strong designs here. The winning design has solved the various claims and challenges with conviction.”

He added: “We now want to get into the negotiations quickly so that the plans can start. At the same time, all other tenders such as the requirements of acoustic planning, structural design and building technology will be prepared on the basis of the winning design.”

The concert hall will be built on a 5,300sq m plot in the Werksviertel, a neighbourhood near Munich East railway station.

The brief was for a freestanding building with an overall floor space of 9,500sq m, including two concert halls, one with 1,800 seats and the other 600, with excellent acoustics. The scheme must also include an outpost of Munich’s College for Music and Drama with a stage venue and practice halls, as well as an education area, foyer, cafes, shops and offices and multi-storey basement car parking.