WS 17/18

The aspiration to live and work in urban areas causes a densification of our inner cities. The pressure on the public open spaces is thereby increased: existing open spaces are filled up with residential buildings and so eliminated from the urban fabric. At the same time, as the number of inhabitants increases the pressure on the remaining open spaces raises.

In contrast, new open spaces are being discovered in the city, which for various reasons have not been available for public use and which can now be revaluated - partly by social pressure and partly by changing the framework conditions. This applies in particular to areas on and under infrastructure facilities.

In the dense urban fabric of Stuttgart, the Österreichischer Platz forms a strong traffic-dominated, unattractive and negatively connoted break. At the same time, with its bridge structures and its extensive use as a parking area, it offers potential for a new urban open space. Accordingly, since 2016 different subcultural activities take place, organised and hosted by ‚Verein Stadtlücken’. Meanwhile the public perception of this site is changing.

In this setting, the task was to experimentally design a public open space that could revaluate the particular spatial requirements of the site and connect the existing different city levels.

At the upper street level, the Österreichischer Platz will be transformed into a pedestrian-friendly public space: a generous bridge spans over the circle center and connects the different street sides and levels. At the same time, it serves as an open space with new stay possibilities. In order to give the new area a special atmosphere and protection, a grove, a 'small forest', is planted alongside the bridge. The 'Forest' metaphor will be, in an abstract form, continued and implemented below the Paulinen Bridge: a playful approach to the verticality explores the special potential of the place. Different atmospheres articulate the elongated space below the bridge and encourage its occupation and use.

Author/sKen Knust, Mohammad Yousefi Koma
PhaseFinal Submission