Building new homes and adding more flora to the city than what could fit on the same number of square meters of land; that is the ideal future of the city! One of the tallest green wall projects in Europe has recently been installed in the centre of Frankfurt am Main, proving that this ideal is already possible.
Residential tower ‘Eden Tower‘ reaches up to 98 meters. The SemperGreenwalls comprise a total of 185,000 plants, spread over more than 2,000 m². This is almost 3 times more surface area than the ground on which the building is standing! Designed by architects Helmut Jahn and Magnus Kaminiarz, the iconic project enjoys a fantastic central location in Frankfurt’s business district. In a city that, like many others, increasingly consists of built environment, vertical gardens are the way to bring greenery back into the gray. The quality of living and working in the building itself and its surroundings was central to developer Immobel Group. The building combines impressive architecture with brightness and lush greenery. Vertical gardens merge with the glass facades to create a living masterpiece.
High Level Challenges
It is the very first time that a green facade has been applied at this height. In order to get the desired end result, several challenges had to be overcome. This has led to new innovations in the realization of this unique project. Because the greenery extends from ground level to no less than 98 meters high, the living wall is exposed to strong wind on the upper floors. To prevent plants or other green wall parts from breaking off, the Flexipanel – the building block of the green facade – has been tested and approved for its resistance to wind load.
Another challenge was the temperature, because as the altitude increases, the temperature decreases. This affects the amount of water that’s needed. The plants are watered using an automatic irrigation system. If the entire strip of greenery were to receive the same amount of water, this would not function optimally. To get the right amount of water in the right place, an advanced irrigation system with temperature sensors and several water groups is used. This way, each plant receives exactly what it needs.
Furthermore, the potential risks of high-rise fires are high. In order to meet the strictest requirements of the building regulations, a new type of Flexipanel has been developed for this green wall and future projects. In an independent assessment, the panel has been tested for, among other things, heat release rate and flashover. The Flexipanel has obtained the fire safety certificate A2-s2,d0. This means that the panels can have little to no contribution to the start of a fire, do not cause molten parts and only produce light smoke. The SemperGreenwall system thus met the strict requirements, and it became possible to use it at great heights. The specialized installers of Sempergreen Group installed the facade over the period of 2021 and 2022. By using a facade lift, even the highest floors could be reached for a high-quality result.
The project developed by Immobel Group is currently nearing completion. It offers 263 luxury apartments in a central location in Frankfurt am Main at the entrance to Europa Allee and near the business districts, the train station and the exhibition centre. The eye-catching building is not only beautiful to look at; large floor-to-ceiling windows in most rooms offer spectacular views of the city and the modern interiors create a special atmosphere full of natural light. Currently, a living wall is also being installed in the lobby. Nature is hereby extended from the outside in, creating an inviting reception for residents and visitors of this iconic tower!
Markus Frank, City Councillor and responsible for economic affairs of the City of Frankfurt am Main, is very satisfied with the iconic architecture and the positive climate effect for Frankfurt:
Photo credits: Immobel Group
Photographer: Roman Gerike