Baakenpark in Hamburg

Anchors aweigh for play and recreation!

Opening in May 2018, Baakenpark in Hamburg’s HafenCity is considered the district’s green centrepiece. On a 1.6 ha artificial peninsula in the Baakenhafen, the park displays comfort with its “island sofa”, elevation with its 15 m high Himmelsberg hill and excitement with its flotsam playground. This new symbol of vitality has been designed by ­Atelier LOIDL landscape architects in collaboration with BBS Landscape Engineering.

Commissioned by the City of Hamburg, the HafenCity developers are taking a bold step into the future by first creating the park with sports, play and recreation areas. In the future Baakenhafen quarter, there will first be parkland, to be followed later by the infrastructure of streets and buildings for habitation and working.



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Photo: Mark Pflüger



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Photo: Leonard Grosch


Hamburg, Germany

HafenCity Hamburg GmbH

Atelier Loidl
Landschaftsarchitekten Berlin GmbH

Design team members
Felix Schwarz,
Andreas Lipp, Claudia Köllner,
Leonard Grosch, Bernd Joosten

Atelier Loidl

Leonard Grosch
Drohnenfotografie Mark Pflüger

Official opening
May 2018

Construction costs
EUR 15.3 million

Thanks to its creation on three different plateaus, Baakenpark features a varied, playful topography with deep incisions and surprising changes of view. The park performs a wide range of functions. As an area of green, the park provides relaxation with sports, play and recreation facilities and is visually and aesthetically appealing, while at the same time serving as a link between the northern and southern parts of the quarter. The three plateaus differ clearly from each other in terms of spaces and character: the western part offers a wide variety of activities for visitors who enjoy exercise, while the incentive to get active diminishes to the east with more areas for passing the time and relaxing.

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Playscape for explorers

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Photo: Leonard Grosch

In the west, a 3,000 m² playscape sets the tone. Wooden crates have been distributed seemingly randomly across a playground, recalling the flotsam of yesteryear and waiting to be discovered by children at play. This is joined by a small multifunctional playing surface of artificial turf, which will be used by the adjacent school as a sports facility. A large sculptural bench seat at the western tip invites users to linger and enjoy a view of the evening sun.

The middle plateau is bordered by three sky swings and items of exercise apparatus, and in the centre there is a sunbathing lawn. Over 100 trees have been planted – mainly oak, pine and old fruit varieties. The sunbathing lawn is an ideal spot for picnics.


Sporting use and meeting point

Further down, right by the future primary school and kindergarten in the Baakenhafen quarter, a 100 m running track has been installed. Its soft EPDM surface extends over a shallow embankment to form a versatile playing surface with two streetball baskets. In the northern embankment, wooden seating steps can be used as a grandstand for concerts and performances. The versatile and robust street furniture is both readi­­ly accessible for those seeking repose while also being suitable for informal play. Stages and grandstands are becoming new places of communication and community in Baakenpark.
In the eastern part is the 15 m high Himmelsberg hill marking the striking end point of the varied and ­multi-faceted park. Sitting under oaks, visitors can enjoy an unforgettable view of the eastern part of HafenCity and the Elbphilharmonie concert hall.

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Photo: Leonard Grosch


Residential quality in the harbour district

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Photo: Leonard Grosch


The embankments have been planted with grasses and herbs. Compared to the old quay which extended 11 m deep into the harbour water, a better ecological environment for fish and aquatic plants has been created below the waterline.

The atmosphere of the Baakenhafen quarter is marked by historic paving, quaysides, rails and crane systems. Large sculptural objects made of wood respond to the industrial scale of the harbour while also serving as a symbol of the new residential quality. The steps, ramps, seating, wooden decks and the Himmelsberg high above everything else are an expression of this new vitality.