Europan Germany

E5: Topic

Mobility and Proximity - New Landscapes of Urban Living

In the context of the 5th EUROPAN competition, the areas left out by European cities in their development and their intersections with transport networks were to be dealt with as a theme.

The development of European cities over the past 50 years has led to a significant consumption of land on the periphery for the construction of new urban areas and their infrastructures. Starting from traffic lines and built-up fragments, an urban fringe network has emerged. On the areas left out from development, unused or hardly used spaces remained. At the same time, cities have left areas whose functions have become obsolete fallow.

Thus, extensive urbanization created a negative imprint of the city of spaces left to themselves.

As visions of urban unification have entered a crisis, the question arises of reappropriating these in-between spaces and transforming them into places to live.

What new forms of urban landscape can be developed here?

If, then, efforts to create a globally uniform cityscape are abandoned, how can residential, landscape, and architectural forms be inserted as new pieces into the puzzle of the existing city, into the disjointed mesh of the modern metropolis?

EUROPAN 5 proposes several themes to young European architects, which are at the same time formulated as questions for architectural design and for the political approaches pursued in urban planning. Based on a selection of concrete situations in 66 European cities, the concepts are to be placed in very different urban cultural contexts, which are nevertheless permeated by the same questions.

With no discernible order, nature and built-up areas are intertwined and residential areas continue to proliferate. How can urban sprawl be prevented? Can urban densification, communal spaces, nature and people's need for increasingly individualized forms of living be reconciled?

In cities with fragmented functions and high volumes of commuters, the connection of residential neighborhoods to transportation networks becomes a central issue. How should these networks be conceived and spatially implemented so that they become a connecting element instead of cutting up the urban fabric?

What does it mean today to live in the city: The detached home in the suburban settlement, more individual living space, living in a multi-story building with all utilities in the immediate vicinity? Living in contact with nature or living with lively public spaces on the doorstep?

What uses can create urban life in residential neighborhoods? Should we establish a network of functional nodes, design a mosaic of different programmatic content, or focus on context-dependent opportunities for use in their socio-economic diversity in each case?

Planning concepts must be developed that integrate urban complexity: the diversity of stakeholders, the mix of public and private actors, changing programs, and frequent changes of use. They influence the urban and architectural space, which must be understood as a process, as a constant interrelationship between the idea of the whole, diverse design and staggered realization.

1700 young architects and teams of architects, urban planners, landscape planners and artists from all over Europe participated in this competition.

66 European locations were up for selection.

The national juries selected 113 projects across Europe, including 50 prizes and 63 purchases.