VGB headquarters, Hamburg

Taking a load off: thanks to top performance by PORR Design & Engineering, great potential for optimisation was identified for the VGB headquarters, resulting in a weight reduction of many hundreds of tonnes. The result makes an impressive addition to the Hamburg cityscape.

Verwaltungs-Berufsgenossenschaft (VBG)
Projekt partners
ECE (approval planning), APB. Architekten BDA (design engineering)
Project duration
Period of service for PDE
5-storey perimeter block development, 15-storey office high-rise, 35,400 m² gross floor area, 1 underground car park, 12 PORR Design & Engineering staff members, 650 tonnes weight reduction

Geometric refinement in a clinker brick look: the facade of the new VGB headquarters blends seamlessly with the surrounding clinker brick architecture of Barmbek.

Weight loss at the VGB

North Barmbek has been the location of the new head office of the Verwaltungs-Berufsgenossenschaft (VBG) since 2016. In 2014, PORR Design & Engineering took on the gap closure role for Work phases 3 and 4 of this property, comprising office spaces, retail trade and restaurants, along with the implementation planning as general planner.


Value engineering comprised the greater part of the company's activities for this project. The structural engineering team was able to identify great potential for optimisation on the basis of the structural calculations for approval planning generated during Work phase 4, and this was implemented in agreement with the VGB and the inspecting structural engineer. This optimisation resulted in a reduction of the cubage of the floor slab by about 1,800 m³, with a corresponding reduction in the weight of reinforcements of around 500 tonnes, as well as a reduction of the limitation of cracking reinforcement in the ceilings, leading to the elimination of 150 tonnes of reinforcement. Moreover, the team managed to convert 7 composite beams, each around 2 m high, to conventional reinforced concrete beams. To the delight of the client, the total weight of the building was reduced by a total of 650 tonnes, representing a significant reduction in costs.


In cooperation with the Sustainability department, Gold certification was sought according to the criteria of the DGNB [German Sustainable Building Council]'s use profile for the "New construction of office and administrative buildings 2012". The integrated implementation of the project using the Building Information Modelling method resulted in another highlight for the client: in the course of the work, the clinker brick facade in the style of the Barmbek brick architecture was completely digitally modelled with BIM.


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