Program: Museum and visitors centre in Zeche Zollverein, conversion of coal refinery.
The former coal mine Zeche Zollverein in Essen, an area of 100 hectares, was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2001. OMA was commissioned to develop a masterplan with the goal of finding a contemporary use for the site.
The combined program of 12,000m2 for the visitors centre, the Ruhrmuseum and the Metaform will be accommodated in the site's most impressive building: the Kohlenwäsche, a former factory for sorting coals. The new program will be added without removing the existing machines that dominate the building. The result is an industrial monument that combines modern use with historic context.