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ICC - International Congress Centre

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  • ICC - Internationales Congress Centrum

To this day, the ICC is considered the prototype of a modern conference centre. The impressive building covers the entire traffic island between the highway, Messedamm and Kantstraße.

For many years, the International Congress Centre Berlin, which opened in 1979, has been by far the most important conference centre in Germany and one of the best utilised worldwide. The trade fair company proudly points out that it has been voted the world's most popular conference venue several times.

Europe’s Largest Congress Centre

Europe's largest congress centre offers two large halls and around 80 smaller halls and rooms - and yet it is considered too small, too uneconomical in terms of room layout, too expensive in terms of operating costs - and to make matters worse, it is contaminated with asbestos. After long discussions about demolition and new construction, the ICC was supposed to be completely renovated and freed from asbestos in 2019. Since then, the ICC has been waiting for the renovation to start. Moreover, the future use of the building has not yet been decided. The building has been under monumental protection since September 2019.

A Prototype of Modern Conference Centres

The competition to build a multifunctional hall on the Berlin exhibition grounds was won in 1965 by the young architect couple Ralf Schüler and Ursulina Schüler-Witte. The specifications changed several times, and by the time work began in 1975, the simple conference hall had become the largest and most expensive German building project since the Second World War. To this day, the building is considered the prototype of a modern conference centre. This is because it was designed differently from all its predecessors. The building site - a traffic island between the highway, Messedamm and Kantstraße - gave the architects the idea of laying out their building like a ship with different decks.

Sophisticated Supply Centre and Large Conference Halls

Below street level there, three basement levels house the ICC's supply centres. The basement structure is penetrated by two rows of 13 round columns each with a diameter of 2.50 metres, which have elastomeric bearings at their heads - above the distribution level on the ground floor - and rubber-like bodies that prevent the transmission of sound and vibrations. Reinforced concrete trusses rest on them, between which the smaller halls are placed. Above this, 13 metres above street level, two large halls that can be combined to form one large space with 9100 seats are located.

ICC Building Resembles a Ship

The wall-roof construction encompassing the entire building is suspended from a silver anodised steel framework that rests on externally attached staircases. Between the staircases and the truss, neoprene bearings dampen sound and vibrations. The main front of the 320-metre-long and 80-metre-wide building shows a glazed (ship's) bridge in analogy to a ship.


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Messedamm 22
14055 Berlin
Opening Hours
The ICC is closed until further notice.

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Last edited: 6 April 2022