Lecture Raumlabor (DE)


Raumlabor is a group of architects, who joined forces in 1999, in Berlin, Germany. Raumlabor's urban prototypes (temporary projects designed to transform the urban landscape) are a playful way of criticizing the rapid and uncontrolled development of Berlin after the Berlin Wall came down.

Raumlabor's repertoire includes pseumatic structures, submarines made using waste and (semi-)serious projects. Their approach is not only designed as a way to criticize the official planning process but always hopes to influence them.Raumlabor's 'Kolorado Plan', which was developed for a council authority in Berlin, proposed a long-term strategy for tackling urban shrinkage.

Raumlabor considers architecture to be a social and societal phenomenon first and foremost. This is obvious in their project, 'Eichbaumoper'. Eichbaum is a U-Bahn station in the Ruhr, in Germany, and was considered to be a prime example of modern architecture when it was built thirty years ago. Lately, the station has been notorious for vandalism and violence. Raumlabor converted the station into an opera house. The opera focuses on the station's history, based on the stories and the ideas of the people who built it, the employees that work there and people who use public transport. A successful project, which, moreover, has also given rise to noticeable changes in the municipality and in the community.

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