2 in 1

Intra muros. Urban planning from the inside

Peter Behrens Academy of Fine Arts PBSA / HSD

New neighborhoods on Wittenberger Weg

Ute Reeh and Andrea Hofmann


In the Greek polis, neighbor no longer means the neighbor, but every household (oikos). Neighborhoods can change, even tradesmen can be part of the neighborhood. Such a neighbourhood as a social one, arising from action, is a constitutive component of the urban region in order to secure the togetherness and interaction of the urban living environment in the tension between polis, legally binding criteria and forms of settlement.
(from Bernd Hamm, Betrifft: Nachbarschaft, Düsseldorf, 1973)

The structural form of organization, which changes over time with the cities and their users, is then less aesthetics, less order in itself, but part of a political, public discourse – and vice versa: Neighbourhood needs urbanity, but it must always be renegotiated as threshold work. But how can this threshold be spatially and structurally designed or made possible? At the interface of community and building, new models of thought and programs are developed.


In the participatory study project, students of the PBSA and pupils* of the Alfred-Herrhausen-Schule in the immediate neighbourhood negotiate wishes and requirements for an urban development for the currently converted area of the former Nirosta plant in Düsseldorf Benrath. The starting point for the discussion is this award-winning competition planning for the urban development of “Benrather
Gärten” on behalf of the project developer CG-Gruppe AG.

4-6 pupils* aged 11-14 years develop and formulate their needs and demands on the quality of life and infrastructure in the new urban district within the framework of the 3-day Intra Muros workshop together with student mentors one-to-one (1:1). Both the accompanied group of pupils and pure student groups (a total of 15-30 students) work independently on these wishes as planning assignments and develop the corresponding
spatial strategies and projects, which are located concretely in the newly emerging area by means of a jointly defined situation or site plan. As agents and communicators, the 4-6 godparents are always part of one of the student groups. The pupils* will be at the university daily from 9:00 to 12:00, the whole group always meets once a day in the plenum for a larger exchange. On the fourth day, all results will be finalised by the students in open formats, compiled into an exhibition contribution and presented to the university public around 16:00 as part of a faculty tour, whereby the pupils* can be present at their own request and present the results together with their student sponsors.


Students of Architecture and Design of the PBSA (15 – 30 persons)
Prof. Stefan Korschildgen, PBSA and Prof. i.V. Christoph Schmidt, PBSA

in cooperation with

Pupils of the Alfred–Herrhausen-Schule, Düsseldorf Garath
Ute Reeh, Zentrum für Peripherie
Andrea Hofmann, raumlaborberlin

Time and place

Mo.11. to Do. 14. 11.2019
PBSA, Raumlabor (ground floor) as well as a short on-site appointment in Düsseldorf Garath