Clouth 3, Cologne

Demand for inner-city apartments is high in Cologne, supply is scarce. One proven strategy is the conversion of inner-city brownfield sites. After almost 150 years of industrial use, around 1,200 apartments and space for around 500 jobs are currently being built on the former factory site of the Rhineland rubber goods factory Franz Clouth. The site is located in the middle of Nippes, a grown and lively district next to the city center and also adjoins the Johannes-Gisberts-Park. An important piece of the puzzle in the east of the neighborhood is the four-story new construction project Clouth 3. The 28 condominiums ranging from 62 m² to 136 m² were sold quickly and were already handed over to their owners in summer 2017. It was designed by the Cologne-based architectural studio kister scheithauer gross architekten und stadtplaner.

Urban planning competition, 2013

Architects: kister scheithauer gross / Johannes Kister (Designer), Isabell Grunwald (Project manager)

Client: moderne stadt | Gesellschaft zur Förderung des Städtebaues und der Gemeindeentwicklung mbH, Cologne

Landscape architects: GREENBOX Landschaftsarchitekten PartG, Cologne

Completed: 06/2017
Total construction area: 5.400 m2

Photos: HGEsch (Slider), Yohan Zerdoun (Content)

Basically, ksg’s design for the building site takes up the typology proposed by the client and reinforces it both architecturally and in connection with the design of the outdoor facilities. Sculptural building volumes with high surface quality stand as cornerstones in a carpet of trees. Vertical windows are cut into the brick volume, emphasizing the idea of the sculptural. Colorful accents give the area a new face, communal areas reinforce the urban character. The L-shaped structure shows an urban face on its long side facing Josefine-Clouth-Strasse. Three incised entrances divide the smooth street façade. Floor-to-ceiling windows perforate the facade of unusual anthracite-colored bricks. But austerity and order are countered by a confident handling of design details, be it the sculptural cutouts of the bright red painted loggias on the large scale or the one rounded corner of the entrances or the handcrafted oak entrance doors on the small scale. To the west, Clouth 3 shows a more relaxed variation of the urban pinhole façade. Here, the modulation is much stronger due to incised loggias, whose tone-in-tone red painted balcony elements protrude from the facade like drawers.