Brandenburg’s Alhambra

Brainstorming and planning workshop

The objective of the planning workshop is a loam building that protects people, landscape and nature and combines innovative and economical process technology with contemporary design language. With a planned length of about 4.2 km, the largest contemporary earthen building ensemble in Europe would be created. This would have the potential to help loam as a building material of the future achieve an economically relevant breakthrough.
In a cooperative planning workshop, the layout of the freeway service area planned near Nebelin will be investigated and designed with surrounding earthen noise barriers and landscapes. This structural fabric is to become a pioneer for a coexistence of new technology and sustainable planning and building.
The concern of the workshop is to design the guiding structures of the facility for people and protected species in such a way that a coexistence of innovation in construction, noise protection, nature protection and nature experience succeeds.

The ends of the clay noise barrier with zigzag termination. This fulfills several functions at once: static – increasing stability against wind pressure; ecological – more diverse habitat due to the formation of niches and sunlight at different angles; aesthetic – breaking up the monotony and interesting shape.


1. Evaluation as a compensatory measure

How can the adobe wall be evaluated?
What factors are relevant?
What may be required in addition?
How can dual uses (by humans and nature) be evaluated?
How can this be illustrated using the example of the meadow at the rest stop?
What must be guaranteed?
How can new meaningful extensions of assessment scales be prepared?

2. Legal classification of a pilot project

What legal requirements must clay noise barriers constructed as part of a pilot project meet?
Which questions concerning building, environmental and planning law related to noise and nature conservation should be
be investigated on them?
Space for open questions concerning the objection and the special situation in Nebelin.

3. Soil and its layers

How is soil agriculturally, legally, ecologically, culturally effective?
Representation of soil as a complex system.
How can soil be preserved in Nebelin?

4. Insects, bats, birds

What dangers, risks, potentials do wall and environment hold for insects, birds and bats?
What conditions do bats in particular require?
What exactly can appropriate monitoring look like?

5. The ‘Garden of the Alhambra

What is the ecological coexistence of plants and animals on site?
Which annual and perennial plants, shrubs and trees should be present?
What should not be missing, in terms of color, fragrance, food for insects, birds and bats, and for the enjoyment of people.

6. A business card of the region

What is the benefit of the clay noise barrier for local people and visitors*?
What is the value of a scientific, architectural and tourist magnet for the Prignitz?
What should be considered in any case?
How can it promote tourism in a new way?

7. The service area

What are the needs of the service area visitors?
What should be there in concrete terms?
Which (guiding) structures enable simultaneity of nature experience, recreation and compensation?
How can this be invented in such a way that respect for the idea of nature conservation is fun and enjoyable?
Development of (guiding) structures for visitors at rest areas.

8. Gastronomy and region

What should distinguish the management of the service area?
What exactly should be like everywhere?
What should be additional?
What makes it attractive for long-distance drivers, transients and tourists from the Prignitz?

9. The Nebelin site

How should it be, so that visitors from Nebelin and the surrounding area like to stay there?
Development of (guiding) structures for visitors from Nebelin and from the neighboring villages.
What should be planted along the wall or on paths leading to it?
How should it be designed?
How can the suggestions of children and Nebelin residents be implemented in concrete terms?

10. Landscape

How does the clay noise barrier embed itself in the landscape?
What do (different) visions of the big picture look like?
How do the earthen buildings and earthen noise barrier link to the landscape conservation area?
How do the earthen buildings and earthen noise barrier link to the biosphere reserve?

11. Engineering

Terrain terracing, statics, compensation areas, areas for parking lots, gas station and rest buildings
as source material for contemporary architecture?
What exactly has to be taken into account in the structural analysis?
What possibilities do the approx. 2 meter high slopes offer?
What problems do they pose?
What effect do they have on the microclimate?
What is the effect of the zigzag of the wall?
How can respective effects be enhanced?
What is the effect on aesthetics?

12. The clay noise barrier in numbers – costing and life cycle analysis

How does the Alhambra compare to conventional noise barriers and structural walls?
What factors need to be taken into account?
Concrete calculations based on the situation in Nebelin?
What are the concrete figures for the three types of earthen walls we propose?

13. Prignitz earthen building technology

How can innovative loam construction help the Prignitz to make an economic breakthrough?
→ Establishment and structure of a Prignitz adobe construction company.
→ Use of recycled material for rammed earth variants.
→ Innovation in the field of corrugated earth construction.
→ Formulation of the key points and the guiding aspect of a funding application (EU together with the Brandenburg Ministry of Economics) and DBU (German Federal Foundation for the Environment) for the Weller press development – support from the Brandenburg Ministry of Economics in promoting innovative technology is in prospect.

14. Revolution in construction?

How can a service station become a pioneer of contemporary building culture?
What impulses does the pilot project provide for building construction and in the area of noise protection?
How can a contemporary cool aesthetic be achieved for the service station?
Task: 2-10 different design ideas/proposals

15. Training/education

What does a training and education concept for the Prignitz earthen building look like?