Church of the Holy Cross


Competition for the new construction of the nave

The Church of the Holy Cross in Vogelsberg-Thuringia is characterised by its eventful history: Built in 1713, the nave was shortened by about half during the time of the GDR and most of the baroque inventory was sold.

Today, the interior of the church is marked by this drastic intervention and has lost its original charm. In addition, the building stock is in great need of renovation and its substance is massively damaged. The congregation would like to combine old substance with new elements.

Within the framework of a competition, D:4 submitted a design for a new building that is intended to replace the nave.

The guiding idea for the new building is the creation of a process-oriented and participatory concept that supports the church community and local residents in redefining the use of the site.

The old perimeter walls of the nave will be preserved and supplemented by a new timber frame construction. This creates a new structure that pays tribute to the history of the existing building and places it in a new context. This is deliberately designed as a low-cost and expandable construction in wood modules. The elements can be prefabricated by local companies and quickly assembled over the existing foundations. Once the supporting structure has been erected, the construction can be extended step by step - depending on the requirements of the use.

The wooden supporting structure traces the cubature and statically effective elements of the original building. The interior of the church is given a new floor slab to counteract the high groundwater level. A new functional wing with sanitary facilities and office space completes the planning.

The interior offers the use of a community room and a church room as well as a citizen and festival hall. Flexible seating makes numerous room constellations conceivable. The altar, reading desk and baptismal font are also mobile, so that variable arrangements are possible. If required, individually heatable units can be installed for groups of up to 20 people.