architecture . landscape . urbanism
Masterplan Breitenau-Guxhagen

Competition, 2018, Guxhagen

1st prize

Urban Idea, Mission Statement of the "Three Rings"
The historical and structural figure of the former monastery complex should be made legible again in its ring structure. The first ring around the inner ensemble of the abbey church will be rounded off in a small-grained scale. These extensions are designed as a second ring with the theme "Building in context" while preserving the historic courtyards and newly ordered open spaces.

"New Living", Variable Typologies
Accompanying the historical ring of walls, these two residential typologies, the courthouses, and the cube houses, are lined up. The courtyard houses configuration is based on a grid of 5 by 10 meters. The resulting modules can be combined as one-, two- and three apartments per floor. In this way, you can build small apartments or conventional residential units with 3-4 rooms. If you add another module courtyard houses can be created for communal living. Therefore, this model also offers a basis for building communities and assemblies (age / multi-generation houses) as an alternative to the conventional housing market. The private open space receives tension through two contrasting spaces: the secluded inner garden on the historic wall alternates with the open private garden, in south-eastern location. The cube houses are presented as free-standing, 7x7x7 meter cubes, which are connected via one porch in the first-floor level and green garden courtyards. Thus, individual uses (living and kitchen on the ground floor with bedroom and bathroom on the upper floor) or socially networked models such as two interconnected shared apartments are possible.
Apartment houses, integrative typology
The apartment buildings are planned as cost-effective system construction with 18 identical modules. Above the layout of the ground floor, once turned and stacked, are the structurally like modules of the upper floor apartments. These are accessed via a pergola, at a distance to the historic wall. This accessibility structure allows a subtle mixture of private distance zones and, in principle, possible publicity (accessibility for social and care services). The configuration of the modules allows "addressability" also on the ground floors. This is supported by the formation of an "alcove" with a private, recessed open space. The open green area, with small trees, connects the housing units with the semi-public play street. The goal is the "feeling of an own house" but under a common, socially secure address. The service rooms on the building heads reinforce this atmosphere.

Handling the Existing
For the existing buildings, a cautious further development is proposed, whereby the goal is formulated to generate a place of learning in the broadest sense; this place of learning is to be settled in the tradition of monastic history with the conscious feedback to the recent history of the place. The area is to be opened for various groups who are looking for a quiet place to study and work. Student and student groups, as well as adult learners, will find a wide variety of space options: seminar, workshop and working spaces, as well as guest apartments. Since these were developed from the heterogeneous stock of existing buildings, the spatial offer is very diverse.

"Time Traces", the Commemorative Axis
The buildings burdened by the history are connected to the "commemorative axis". This axis runs through the area diagonally in the north-south direction. It begins at the new entrance at the daycare area, located in the former guard house, spans the components of the former prisons in the monastery core, accompanies the tithe barn (formerly the Gestapo) and leads out into the area of ​​the cemetery with the wooden commemorative cross. This "broken axis" is to be visualized as a time trace of memory with means of landscape and sculptural elements and where all respective stations have been historically handled.