Elsa Prochazka completes new social housing estate in Austria's capital
The City of Vienna has a long tradition of social housing and urban renewal policies. Today, due to increasing social diversity, housing policy has to find answers on quite a variety of challenges; influence on the overall rent level, prevention of homelessness to a large extent, extensive social cohesion and public influence on planning qualities and innovations.
Other requirements included affordability of living space, ensuring a social and functional mix, cost reduction through planning, pilot projects on affordable housing construction, economic land use, financing and funding options, contributions to climate protection through housing construction, technical and ecological qualities and standards in new housing construction provide low energy consumption, flexibility and open space; all together, contributing to the highest living standards within the EU.
Public housing provides affordable homes for housing estates - contradictions in society cannot be resolved with architecture, nevertheless, to amend the criteria for contemporary habitats based on specific requirements could enrich the discourse on residential architecture. Amenities were implemented in 120 apartments as shown, their functionality not pre-determined in the flats except sanitary facilities, daylight in the staircases and low energy technical implemention. A 'room in the landscape' provides an outdoor space for every flat, offering an inside / outside connection, protected with a second diagonal facade, which gives the impression of a 'crystal' reflecting in the landscape, changing with the light during the day and the different seasons.
Due to the pilotis from the semipublic ground area with communal laundry and hobby rooms, bicycle and stroller storage near to the bright entry area connected with outdoor facilities, while the whole outdoor landscape for the three building complexes is connected, so the residential area for approximately 400 people becomes part of a high-quality urban landscape and provides an identity for the inhabitants.