BMW Museum by architect Karl Schwanzer.
Planning started in spring 2002. Essential renovation work commenced in 2004. The new concept envisaged a significant increase in the size of the museum to reflect the importance of the company as a global player and the continual increase in the product range. Firstly, the existing museum bowl was linked up with the adjacent low building to increase the exhibition floorspace from 1,000 to 5,000 m². This expansion allows the new museum complex to offer sufficient space for presenting around 120 exhibits.
The concept is based on an idea by architect Karl Schwanzer who created the original BMW Museum in 1973. He defined the internal structure of this circular building as a continuation of the road in an enclosed space. This idea was expressed as a contemporary development and reinterpretation in the neighbouring low building encompassing the vision of a "road in the enclosed space as a principle of dynamic architecture".
Analogous to the structure in the circular building, where platforms are positioned along the road to emulate squares, the exhibition areas in the adjacent low building are also configured on a ramp as the central visitor route. However, the depth of the dynamic synthesis of architectural elements, ramps and exhibition houses varies.
Seven exhibition houses have been built in the low building. Each of the houses has been given an individual "identity" developed on the basis of the themes. This individual appearance creates a context for the exhibits and provides a set of reference points along the route through the museum measuring approximately 1,000 metres in length. The tour route has been designed with no crossroads and takes the visitor to all 25 exhibition areas.
The listed circular museum building - the bowl - is located directly adjacent to the BMW Tower and is the symbol of the BMW Museum. The building work carried out between 2004 and 2008 involved taking the structure back to the original state when first constructed in 1973. Architect Professor Karl Schwanzer had designed the museum "as a continuation of the road in an enclosed space": A central visitor ramp within the bowl links up a system of suspended platforms.
The interpretation of the ramp as a road and the exhibition areas as squares was transferred in the new concept of the museum to the adjacent low building: While the external facade of this rectangular building remains as the "historic wrapping", the internal floors were removed and all structures were taken out of the interior. This created a large interior space and a new architecture was integrated comprising a continuous ramp and seven independent exhibition houses. This architecture made of glass and steel forms a deliberate contrast to the bowl.
While the external appearance of the bowl presents the aspect of a monumental concrete sculpture and the character of an open-plan holistic space dominates the interior, the architecture in the low building takes on an urban character. The two building sections - circular building and low building - are linked together by a ramp which leads visitors to all 25 exhibition areas.
While the bowl is reserved for temporary exhibitions, the low building provides an extended tour of the most important BMW themes. Based on seven major thematic areas, the same number of independent exhibition houses linked by ramps are designed and installed in the low building.
Experience the world of BMW – with all your senses.
Where would you go to experience the fascination that is BMW from the first moment? Obviously, in any BMW automobile you’d see on any road. And from the moment you step into the BMW Welt in Munich – the world’s one and only BMW experience and delivery centre. You won’t feel the sensation of the BMW brand anywhere more than you do here.
BMW is something to be seen, heard, smelled, tasted and touched. That’s the idea behind the BMW Welt, a place you won’t easily forget. This is a place that grabs you with all of your senses, a place with futuristic architecture that still blends right in between the BMW headquarters, BMW plant, BMW Museum and the Olympic Park.
Architectural highlight – the double cone.
What makes a BMW one of the most desirable cars? What does the concept of “future” at BMW mean? And what are the ideas behind the BMW brand? Visitors will find all these answers and more at the BMW Welt. The spectacular stage for it all: The Double Cone. The breathtakingly dynamic structure rises to become a roof that extends like a sky above the BMW Welt. The ambitious architecture of the double cone is as if it were predestined for fascinating events – such as the presentation of the latest BMW models and innovative brand concepts.
There are also regular events on social matters such as economics, technology, politics, media, art and culture that take place in the double cone.
BMW: More than just a car.
The Plaza has the world’s largest permanent BMW automobile presentation in the world. The exhibition will follow you throughout your trip through the BMW Welt, everywhere you look.
Close to the automobile presentation, there is a separate room – BMW Individual – a place to enjoy a spectacular presentation on creating your own personal BMW. Material samples will give you a first impression of the limitless world of ideas and combinations at BMW Individual.
The gallery that not only combines the BMW Welt to the BMW Museum, but also runs throughout the building, will give you a memorable insight into the current automobile range.
BMW Motorrad towards the north of the BMW Welt is an exhibition on the joy of biking. You will find a selection of the current BMW motorcycle range on permanent display – guaranteed to raise the pulse of the odd biking fan amongst our visitors.
The future is now at the BMW Welt.
We don’t only talk about the future at BMW. We actively contribute to shaping the future in our responsibility towards the environment and coming generations. And this is there for everyone to see at our Technology and Design Atelier.
Find out how sustainable development is every inch a part of the sheer driving pleasure that you will find in every BMW.
Delve into the technological innovation at BMW. Even complicated developments are presented in a simply way for anyone to follow – an exciting experience, not just for technology buffs.
BMW EfficientDynamics is one of the main themes here, with interesting information on engine optimisation, intelligent energy management, improvement of lightweight construction and aerodynamics in modern automobile manufacturing.
Take a few more steps and immerse yourself in the BMW design philosophy, and find out the ideas behind that typical BMW design, inside and out.
BMW ConnectedDrive and the engine exhibits you’ll find there are more highlights in this part of the BMW Welt, exhibits that present technology in a captivating way you won’t find anywhere else. If you’re passionate about technology and design and want to know how about the wealth of ideas and innovations that go into each BMW, make sure you have time to spare – it’ll be worth your while.
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