Carmody Groarke has designed a circular aluminium pavilion that will provide hospitality for a 1700-seat temporary theatre built within Hamburg’s Großmarkt structure. The heritage listed market building was designed by Bernhard Hermkes and built between 1958-1960. As one of Germany’s busiest fresh produce markets, the Großmarkt turns over 1.5 million tonnes of goods per year, operating 24 hours a day.
The pavilion’s drum-like form allows uninhibited access to the working market site to hundreds of delivery lorries per day, while its low-lying profile maintains distinctive views to the listed market structure, in which the main theatre building is located.
As one of the only hospitality spaces on the vast 27ha industrial site, the pavilion’s distinct shape marks the beginning of the theatre experience, allowing for efficient ticketing, all-weather queuing outside under its perimeter canopy, and a vast square-shaped hospitality space inside for visitor refreshments at show intervals.
The pavilion’s structure is a radial cross-laminated timber frame, chosen because it is highly sustainable and enables fast-track construction, minimising disruption to the operation of the market. The timber frame has a black lacquered finish, creating a theatrical environment within, while the exterior of the pavilion is clad in a bright corrugated aluminium, which subtly reflects the activity of the surrounding market. At the centre of the pavilion, a courtyard for the visitors passively ventilates the building.