Since the instigation of the International Building Exhibition (IBA) Emscher Park (1989–1999), the Ruhr area has been a pioneer for the transformation of large industrial areas. The beacon for this process is the disused coal mine and cokery Zollverein in Essen, a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2001. The most significant industrial monument in Germany is now a tourist attraction, an economic hub, and at the same time an educational campus. This success is based on continuous urban planning that brings together listed existing structures and new ideas.
The specially developed master plan by Rem Koolhaas (OMA) and the principle of “preservation through reutilization“ form the basis for all construction activities on the site. The developments of the last thirty years on the UNESCO World Heritage Site Zollverein are an answer to the question of how heritage protection can be aligned with the diverging aims of urban development, the creative industry, and architecture. This volume presents the individual projects that will be largely realized by 2018, and documents through text and images the successful metamorphosis of the former industrial site into an international best practice model for handling industrial heritage.