Dammerstock Housing Estate

Dammerstock Housing Estate, Karlsruhe
KTG Karlsruhe Tourismus GmbH;
Dammerstock Housing Estate, Karlsruhe

  • year of construction / construction time 1929
  • architect Walter Gropius, Wilhelm Riphahn, Caspar Maria Grod, Alfred Fischer, Walter Merz, Wilhelm Lochstampfer, Hans Detlev Rösiger, Fritz Rößler, Franz Roeckle, Hans-Detlef Rösinger

  • year of construction / construction time 2016 — 2017

  • year of construction / construction time 2012 — 2018

  • year of construction / construction time 1930 — 1931

  • year of construction / construction time 1934 — 1937

  • year of construction / construction time 1949 — 1950
  • architect Willi van den Kerkhoff

building typology

Also known as: Dammerstock Estate, Dammerstock-Siedlung, Bauausstellung Karlsruhe-Dammerstock

In addition to the Weissenhof Estate in Stuttgart, the Dammerstock Estate in Karlsruhe is one of the most important examples of the New Architecture in south-western Germany. Created by Walter Gropius, Otto Haesler and a host of other architects, the residential development was built in 1929 in just seven months as a model social housing estate.

The City of Karlsruhe had set clear priorities in its housing programme and the 1928 competition linked to it: the Dammerstock Estate was envisaged not as a playing field for the artistic avant-garde but as a means to explore viable responses to issues of social housing. Walter Gropius emerged as the winner of the competition and, together with runner-up Otto Haesler and others, ultimately built 228 of 750 planned dwellings.

The city presented the model housing estate to the public in 1929 with the exhibition “Die Gebrauchswohnung” (The functional dwelling). The target group for the small apartments with standardised furniture and state-of-the-art sanitary facilities were people in middle and lower income brackets. Instead of traditional perimeter blocks with courtyards, the city planners had envisaged linear housing blocks, which Gropius and his colleagues implemented as parallel rows oriented north–south, allowing optimal use of daylight: in the mornings the sun shone into the bedrooms and in the evenings it shone into the living rooms.

Gropius himself designed three buildings in Dammerstock. His house with balcony access is now listed as a historic monument. It unites the aesthetic principles of air, light and hygiene that also found application in the other buildings: in the spirit of the New Architecture, radiant-white plaster, grey plinths, flat roofs and uniform window sizes are recognisable features of the façade design. Another of the estate’s striking buildings was designed by Otto Haesler. It housed communal laundry facilities for the community and a central heating plant, along with a restaurant and a butcher shop. A tall rectangular element decorated with a stylised map of the estate marks the entrance to the development.

Because of the Great Depression, the estate initially remained incomplete. In the 1930s, it was expanded with conventional buildings. Not until 1949 did the city resume construction according to Gropius’s original design ideas. The Dammerstock Estate, which has meanwhile been refurbished in compliance with historic preservation standards, remains fully inhabited to this day. [KM]

Map

Contact and opening hours

Address

Dammerstocksiedlung
Nürnberger Straße 5
76199 Karlsruhe

conveying formula

Directions by local public transport:

Nächstgelegener Bahnhof der Deutschen Bahn: Karlsruhe Hbf
Nächstgelegene Haltestelle ÖPNV (Bus, Straßenbahn o.ä.): Dammerstock

conveying formula

Ein Teil der Gebäude wurde über das KfW-Programm "Effizienzhaus Denkmal" gefördert und verfügen über den vorgegebenen energetischen Standard. Diese Gebäude wurden 2016 mit dem Prädikat "Klimahaus Baden-Württemberg"ausgezeichnet.

Dammerstock Housing Estate, Karlsruhe
Monika Müller-Gmelin, Stadt Karlsruhe
Dammerstock Housing Estate, Karlsruhe
Dammerstock Housing Estate, Karlsruhe: Gropius model
KTG Karlsruhe Tourismus GmbH
Dammerstock Housing Estate, Karlsruhe: Gropius model

This place is part of the tour:

Tour 1

Explore the avant-garde

Stuttgart, Ulm und Karlsruhe

The modern metropolis reimagined: experience the Weissenhof housing estate in Stuttgart, the testaments to modernist university architecture in Ulm, and the Dammerstock housing estate in Karlsruhe.

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