Thanks to one of Niemeyer's last designs, Leipzig is set to have a ball.
Workers at a factory in Leipzig, eastern Germany, will, come September, be able to dine in a striking concrete-and-glass building designed by Oscar Niemeyer. The story of the posthumous and distant arrival of one of the Brazilian architect’s final designs began back in 2011 when Ludwig Koehne, owner of the Kirow-Werke production facility (which serves his two firms, railway-crane specialist Kirow and tram-maker HeiterBlick), asked Niemeyer if he would consider designing an extension for the in-house canteen. For the previous 11 years it had been open to the public for lunch and occasional events. And talented chef Tibor Herzigkeit, who runs the restaurant as an independent business, wanted to expand and open in the evenings. ‘We knew it was a tiny project,’ says Koehne, ‘but the logic was that if the chef left, my workers wouldn’t have nice food and that would be terrible.’
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