Platz der Republik 1
Norman Foster 1999
As well as being gutted by fire, the former home of German democracy was further damaged during Allied bombing of Berlin in World War II. It was left in this run-down state until the 1960s, when it was opened as a conference center. The Reichstag was the site of the German reunification ceremonies at midnight on October 2, 1990.
Foster and Partners won a commission in 1992 to transform the building into the new home for the unified German Parliament. The Foster team's design focuses on making the processes of government more transparent.
Foster's dome is a gleaming metal and glass structure with a ramp that spirals up a to a roof terrace with 360-degree views of central Berlin. The dome overlooks the debating chamber for the Bundestag and a central mirrored cone draws light into the plenary chamber. The design also preserves remnants of the building's colorful past, including graffiti left by the Red Army in 1945.
Foster was awarded the Pritzker Prize in 1999 for his work on the building, which has become one of the top tourist destinations in Berlin.
The Reichstag design strongly influenced Foster's City Hall in London.
© 2010 Gianmarco Meroni. All rights reserved. Use without permission is illegal.