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Hamburg applies for world heritage status for two sites

After the recognition of Hamburg‘s wadden sea as a world heritage site of nature, hopes are high in Hamburg to be also honoured as a world heritage of culture with two sites.

The German government filed the city‘s application for the recognition of its Speicherstadt and Kontorhaus quarters, including the Chilehaus building, in Paris after more than three years of preparations by Hamburg‘s heritage office.

Speicherstadt and neighbouring Kontorhausviertel form a unique complex of warehouse and office building architecture. Built between 1885 and 1927, the 17 warehouses of the Speicherstadt, each seven or eight storeys high, constitute the world’s largest remaining warehouse complex from the late 19th and early 20th century – an urban ensemble of outstanding integrity and quality. The adjacent Kontorhaus district was built to serve the functions arising from creation of the Speicherstadt. Built in the 1920s, it is the first dedicated office district on the European continent. Characterised by a high degree of stylistic consistency, landmark buildings include Messberghof, Sprinkenhof and Chilehaus. Built 1922-1924 by architect Fritz Hoeger in the shape of a ship, Chile House is regarded as the world‘s best example of red brick expressionism.

During the current year 2014, ICOMOS experts commissioned by UNESCO will visit the Hamburger sites and provide an opinion to the outstanding universal value of the ensemble. In mid-2015, the World Heritage Committee will decide on the recognition of Hamburg‘s two sites.

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