For more than 30 years, we have been designing, planning and building the office buildings for LVM Versicherung's campus on the Kolde-Ring in Münster. The most recent highlight is the new LVM5 office tower, designed by HPP and Prof. Duk-Kyu Ryang, also known as The Crystal due to its unusual cubic geometry and transparency. During the day, the surroundings and the sky are reflected in the sloping façade surfaces; at night, the building provides views as if through a glass-like crystal.
The new crystal-like structure is a landmark of the zeitgeist and serves to reinforce LVM's identity.
The three-storey pedestal floor extends along the street in a prismatically staggered configuration, with an alternating pattern of solid metal-clad and glass-clad surfaces. From this crystalline structure, the skyscraper emerges as the largest crystal of all and, by virtue of its sculptural appearance, forms a contrast to the existing ensemble of buildings on the LVM campus.
...to make connections
Looking at the silhouette of Münster, however, it becomes clear that the existing high-rise buildings on the LVM campus are united by the LVM 5 skyscraper and combine to form a distinctive urban group. The Crystal faces the neighbouring buildings through its inclined façade planes and is connected to them through a glass bridge on the 11th floor.
The glass bridge serves as a symbolic gesture of solidarity.
Expressive and Sculptural
The sculptural and expressive architectural language of the Crystal is evident in all dimensions - in the entire cubature and interior design as well as in the furniture and the art works in the building. The façade surfaces, walls, fixtures and furniture are bevelled, bent obliquely or even bi-axially.
The changing seasons
While the pedestal houses the numerous event and training areas, floors 2 to 14 house the "open-space" office areas with 450 workstations, which can be flexibly furnished by the employees according to their needs. Open office spaces are divided using furniture and half-height partition walls. The decor of the carpets on the office floors is based on a colour concept that represents the seasons.
The structural challenge
The pedestal consisting of up to four-storeys, with its irregular geometry was designed to be of reinforced concrete construction with wide spanning subceilings and cover slabs and partially inclined bracing walls. The supporting structure of the tower consists of a reinforced concrete skeleton with flat slabs, struts and cores. Yellow coated steel girders visibly assume a stiffening function towards the outside.
The complexity of the façade
6,000 square metres of double-skin glass façade with a climatic buffer zone envelop the Crystal. According to the shape of the building, the geometries of the façades of the four different building views differ greatly: 480 of the more than 600 façade elements have different geometries. The external façade follows the triangular grid on which the geometry of the building as a whole is based, whereas the internal façade - with its openable windows - is arranged orthogonally.
Energy consumption goal
Right from the start, the concept for LVM 5 was driven by high standards of sustainability and environmentally friendly construction. LVM 5 was the first building in Münster and one of the first buildings in Germany to be completed as a positive primary energy building - with positive annual energy consumption.
"A building that sets standards and completes Münster's centre where it stands."
Markus Lewe, Lord Mayor of the City of Münster