A venue for culture and dialogue in Berlin

In the center of Berlin on the Museum Island, a very special cultural center has been built: the Humboldt Forum. It's located in the Berlin Palace, which was built at the beginning of the 18th century as one of the most important secular Baroque buildings and is now getting revitalized. This has also an impact on the city of Berlin - the Berlin Cathedral and the Altes Museum at the Lustgarten as well as the Boulevard Unter den Linden will re-gain their urban orientation.

But in contrast to the former function when the Berlin Palace was a symbol for military power and Roman-influenced autocratic architecture,  it will now represent a whole new idea:

The Humboldt Forum is conceptualized as a venue for culture and dialogue that spans the globe. The comprehensive programme of exhibitions and events offers visitors an opportunity to experience the world in its entirety and informs about culture and science. The concept of Humboldt Forum creates spaces for encounters and exchange.

From 2019 on, permanent exhibitions of the Ethnological Museum (Ethnologisches Museum) and the Museum of Asian Art (Museum für Asiatische Kunst), the Berlin Exhibition and the Humboldt Laboratory as well as exceptional temporary exhibitions will move into the Berlin Palace.

With this comprehensive programme, the Humboldt Forum attracts very different types of visitors who will move within the Berlin Palace in different ways.

 

How can be ensured that the layout of the building is functional as well as comfortable for these different types of visitors?

To answer this question, accu:rate was commissioned by the Humboldt Forum Foundation with a visitor flow analysis. In the first step, our cooperation partner THEMATA set up all the relevant parameters which are included in the analysis. These contain, for example, the definition of different types of visitors including their varied destinations within the Berlin Palace, their movement patterns inside the house or the length of stay of the various groups. Additionally, they considered operational aspects such as opening hours or frequencies of the service areas in order to draw conclusions about the maximum load of the house - the so-called peak hour. All these parameters were summarized in significant simulation scenarios and these scenarios were analyzed and compared to each other.

 

Optimizing the layout

On the basis of the simulation results, we were able to develop recommendations on how the building can be optimized. Since the visitor flow analysis was conducted at such an early stage, the recommendations can easily be incorporated into the planning and contribute to the fact that the Humboldt Forum is a place "where visitors feel comfortable and want to spend time."

 

Image sources:

Fig.1: The east facade in Septemer 2016.  Stephan Falk / Stiftung Humboldt Forum im Berliner Schloss.

Fig.2: Das Eingangsfoyer Franco Stellas unter der Kuppel im Berliner Schloss, mit dem historischen Innenportal III Eosanders im Jahr 2019, Förderverein Berliner Schloss e.V.

Titel image: Modell des Berliner Schlosses, Förderverein Berliner Schloss e.V.

Project picture: Förderverein Berliner Schloss e.V. 

Factsheet

Client: Humboldt Forum Foundation
Task: Visitor flow simulation
Result: Optimization of visitor flows in the building

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