Designed with Dlubal Software


Designed with Dlubal Software
Designed with Dlubal Software
New Roofs Above Gates of
Frankfurt Exhibition Grounds
In 2008, the German company Messe
Frankfurt organized an architectural
competition for planning the redesign
of the northern and southern gates
leading to the exhibition center. The
target was to design a guardhouse
and a roof for each gate. The building
owner wished the roofs to be developed as extraordinary structures with
high recognition value.
The winning designer was the German
architect Ingo Schrader from Berlin,
who worked closely together with the
German structural engineers Bollinger
+ Grohmann. The draft included circular roofs with a diameter of about 25
m supported by pyramid shaped columns.
In August 2013, the roof construction
was finished on the northern gate.
Roof Construction for Northern
In the course of further planning, the
circular shape became an oval because of the adaption to the local conditions. Its size is 42 m x 18 m with a
maximum lamella depth of 60 cm. The
roof cantilevers up to 10 m and is only
15 cm thick on its edge. The four columns are placed in an irregular grid.
Their pyramidal shapes visually represent the downward force distribution in the columns. Due to their triangular shape, they appear particularly
slim and the roof has the illusion that
it is floating.
Northern gate after its completion in August 2013 (picture: Messe Frankfurt/Bach)
VBA script. A special algorithm reduced iteratively the cross-section dimension of the flat steel lamellas on
the basis of the occurring equivalent
Digital planning and structural engineering
Bollinger + Grohmann Ingenieure,
Frankfurt am Main, Germany
The following companies participated
in the construction:
Prebeck GmbH, Bogen, Germany
Building owner
Messe Frankfurt
Dlubal Software GmbH
Ingo Schrader, Berlin
The roof support structure was generated and optimized by means of a
computational model. One may have
the impression that the axes of the
load-bearing lamellas are randomly arranged. But their arrangement is the
result of a computer-based design
process where structural, formal and
manufacturing boundary conditions
were brought in line.
Then, the lamellas were optimized in
their height and width. In this optimization process RSTAB was connected with the design program Rhinoceros by using an individually created
Steel stress analysis of northern roof in RSTAB (screen shot: Dlubal)
Software for Structural and Dynamic Analysis

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