Leipzig Justice Center / kister scheithauer gross architekten und stadtplaner
Text description provided by the architects. The Staatsbetrieb Sächsisches Immobilien- und Baumanagement (SIB) planned a new justice center in Leipzig. As a first building section, the administration of justice was to be accommodated next to the already existing district court. kister scheithauer gross architekten und stadtplaner were awarded the contract. The project included not only the conversion and restoration of the listed buildings but also a linking new building on the site of the former prison. This created a total of 8,800 m² of usable space for the public prosecutor’s office. In one part of the building, a memorial was to be set up with reference to the former execution site of the GDR.
The spatial program for the Leipzig public prosecutor’s office with 252 employees essentially includes office, record and meeting rooms, archive and registry areas as well as storage areas for evidence. As this is an investigative authority, very high-security requirements had to be taken into account for the location of the public prosecutor’s office. The construction project included the renovation and conversion of the listed existing buildings along Arndtstrasse and Alfred-Kästner-Strasse as well as a new connecting building in the inner courtyard of the area.
The T-shaped overall structure complements the courtyard situation. The cubature affects the urban demarcation and mediates between the clearly higher district court and the four-story residential buildings through the staggering height of the six-story structure. In contrast to the new building are the landmarked existing buildings. They were functionally linked to the development of the new building. The basic structure of the buildings themselves was maintained. They were refurbished and converted only in some areas.
The new building in the inner courtyard area was to connect the two existing buildings as a simple, clearly structured administrative building with a calm design. The six-story, back-ventilated facade made of light-colored concrete elements was divided horizontally into three parts, each of which connects two story levels vertically.
This chosen division takes the building height back and thus mediates against the adjacent four-story residential buildings. The new structure is wider on the first floor to the 2nd floor and then recedes on the upper floors. This gives the approximately 70-meter-long, austere-looking building a structured and smooth appearance. Furthermore, the length of the structure is interrupted by the vertical window formats, which appear as blind windows in front of the parapet and the lintel, in the upper and lower areas of each floor.
The transformation (Alfred-Kästner-Straße / Arndtstraße). The special preservation focus was on the two street-facing facades, including the fully preserved case windows and window bars. Due to security concerns, the internal windows were replaced with new ones. The exterior, street-facing windows, and bars were preserved and refurbished.
A special feature in the Arndtstraße section of the building was the former detention cells with the impressive staircase system,.The evidence and library rooms were located there. The individual cells were given connecting doors in the partition walls.