They feel very much at home in the picturesque village of Oberstdorf in the Oberallgäu region: ski jumper Katharina Althaus and Nordic combined skier Johannes Rydzek. It is not only home to them, but also to their great passion, Nordic skiing sports. The Nordic Skiing World Championships will be returning to Oberstdorf in 2021. In 2005, Katharina und Johannes’ home was the scene of a winter fairy-tale that now promises to be told all over again for them both. As Johannes recalls, ‘The World Championships in 2005 were truly inspiring.’ ‘It’s something really special to us, and it is a privilege to be a part of it.’ says Katharina, looking forward in anticipation to the ‘home’ world championship events.
Florian Speigl, Project Manager in charge of the building programme for the new world championship facilities, also remembers very clearly how the event changed many things in the village: ‘There has been a whole range of fantastic developments here since the world championships in 2005 – and, for 2021, we have been working very closely with an environmental and sustainability commission right from the start.’ In both new facilities in Oberstdorf, the ski jumping and cross-country skiing stadium, the choice fell on climate solutions from Viessmann.
Perfect performance – the natural way
To ensure fulfilment of the ambitious sustainability targets, the concept for the ski jumping had to be not only practical, but also, and above all, extremely energy-efficient: there, a Viessmann air-water heat pump utilises heat from the surrounding air to heat the rooms provided for the athletes. Sponsored by Mother Nature, so to speak.
Environmental aspects were also the top priority for Viessmann in the case of the cross-country skiing stadium: To reduce the carbon footprint to an absolute minimum, pellets produced from wood sourced from the region are burned in a pellet boiler. The heat energy generated with an efficiency of over 95% is distributed through a local heat network and used to heat the functional buildings – in complete harmony with the natural balance of the environment.
Hopes for the future
‘The 2021 world championships inspired our building programme, but were not the reason for it.’ says Florian Speigl, referring to the realisation of sustainability in numerous aspects of the joint project. After all, the facilities are intended to serve as a basis for enabling future generations to enjoy both winter sports and the world of nature for many years to come. Johannes Rydzek also enthusiastically expresses his hopes: ‘With the Centre, we have created something quite amazing for young talents – and precisely this awareness and respect for the needs of the environment is what I want to pass on to the younger generation.’