The 1,800 m² building site, located to the west in the park of Schloss Arenberg in Salzburg, is dedicated to the expansion of the Arenberg Center, a medical education center operated by a private foundation. The ensemble is supplemented by a cultural edifice in the form of an art gallery.
The center of the site features a protected oak tree, which plays a major role in the design. It is neither possible to formulate the spatial program as a squat perimeter block nor to accommodate it in a central structure with a direct connection to the castle and so the tree becomes the central element of the design. The building is conceived as a garden pavilion around the tree.
A base composed of three single-story buildings takes up the building fabric of the surrounding old town and the edge of an existing wall. The pavilion forms visual axes to the castle and into the park, giving consideration to a newly designed entrance. The spiral building above the base connects all building components into to a sculpturally effective composition and is supported by exterior stairways. In terms of architectural history, this solution is a further development of the theme ‘plinth and building’. In the design for the Arenberg Center in Salzburg, the building not only detaches itself from the plinth (classical modernism), but also effectively interconnects with nature.