Berlin Wall Zone

MSc Studio

Year:

2005-2007

Raviv Ganchrow, Oscar Rommens, Marc Schoonderbeek

Author(s):

TRESPASSING THRESHOLDS

[…] In the spring of 2005, studio BC took the former Wall Zone in Berlin as its field of investigation. During the years when the wall was present and immediately after the Fall, the zone constituted a void connecting the periphery to the centre and back to the periphery with a north-south trajectory. Fifteen years on, many subsequent transformations have taken place in this zone. Starting with a group of 24 students, the initial task was seemingly simple: divide this line into 24 equal parts and define the precise borders within each portion of the wall zone. This defined strip in Berlin had gone through a well-considered strategy of urban development by the Berlin council. Acknowledging the temporality of its task, the city planners decided that future development of this strip should not be undertaken within the framework of a single generation. Consequently this meant that certain sectors related to the former wall zone would remain as a potential resource, able to accommodate unforeseen developments for future generations. For the research of studio BC, this strategy had a crucial impact as it offered the present condition in its full diversity. The former zone has become the simultaneous site of extensive urban development interlaced with pockets of seemingly open terrain. The research inevitably raised an array of issues, the most challenging being the treatment and value of historical contexts, the act of systematic urban exploration, the strategy of encountering a diversity of urban realms and the importance of mapping as an expressive translation of these realms. […] The elongated plot expresses in many ways its inherent ambiguities, revealing the intermittent layers of sediment between what at times seems to be the overwhelming mass of historic memory intertwined with the weightless banalities, or rather essential intimacies, of lived urban space.

MSc studio BC, semester 06, 2005-07

Participants: Hieke Bakker, Maarten Bax, Willemien Bosch, Xiao-Wei Chiu, Delia Comes, Mark Dek, Ingo Douwma, Martijn Floris, Adrien Kapper, Jerry Kramer, Jacobijne Langerijs, Sander Lückers, Sander van Schaik, Angeline Stuyts, Hao Tran, Patrick de Weerd, Sjouke Westhoff, Frank Zoeter.

Mentors: Raviv Ganchrow, Oscar Rommens, Marc Schoonderbeek, Aage Albers, Freerk Hoekstra.

Berlin Wall Zone