Watertower and Pump House Dudelange, Dudelange, Luxembourg
Kaell architecte & Jim Clemes

Adaptive re-use project of the water tower and pump house in Dudelange (Luxembourg) for the exhibition of the photographic collection “The Bitter Years” by Edward Steichen, developed and produced by Kaell architecte / Jim Clemes for the Luxembourg Ministry of Culture, Department of National Sites and Monuments

The main focus of the project was to preserve the strong impression of the water tower while at the same time combining it with a contemporary architectural language. One of the biggest challenges was the accessibility of the upper water tank without disfiguring the existing construction. A concrete staircase that twines around a concrete column serving as elevator shaft was integrated in the existing structure. The choice of a light-coloured structured concrete and the harmonic interaction of material, form and function are creating an impressive but also discreet sculpture in the water tower.

The base and the water tank were remodelled to fit the special demands of the permanent photo exhibition. The platform underneath the tank was transformed into a vista point with large window surfaces offering the visitors a stunning view on the city of Dudelange and on the former brownfield “Op der Schmelz” to be soon developed into a new urban quarter.

The watertower is entered through the pomhouse, the former pump station located next to the water tower. The pump house was hollowed out to obtain a spacious entrance hall offering space for temporary photo exhibitions. Thanks to a careful renovation with minimalistic interventions, the red brick structure and the rough appearance of a factory hall stay visible and become a contemporary witness of the industrial past of Dudelange. A corridor built of ship containers connects the pomhouse with the base of the water tower and leads the visitor to the exhibition rooms.

Set in an enchanted surrounding of overgrown nature and former cooling ponds, the spatial trilogy with the “Waassertuerm” and the “Pomhouse” creates a mystic atmosphere where the visitors can plunge into a journey through past and present.

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