The rebirth of historical centers in some important German cities represents a unique phenomenon, due to the programmatic nature of the designers’ intentions and the variety of proposed solutions. Accompanied by a controversial debate, the cases here considered share the same principle of critical reconstruction. A principle which aims to correct the errors often carried out in a state of emergency in the post-war period and mostly based on alternative ideas of city. If this reaction – introduced by the revision of the principles of the Modern Movement since the 50s – arises from a slow awareness of the value of the historical heritage, it is with the first critical reconstruction of historical centres of the 80s that the will to recall concretely their identity is manifested. The projects here presented are to be considered a mature phase of this reflection on urban history and the possibility to reactivate it nowadays. In the search of a new identity of their old characters, emerges a dialectic relationship between historical continuity, critical reconstruction and urban design, with recurring themes like: the memory of the layouts of streets and squares, the small-scaled parcels of the blocks, the reuse of historical typologies, the individuality of each house, the representativeness of the façade, the use of traditional forms and materials. According to a growing attention to the veracity of the original urban image, these projects are intended not as a mere mise en scène, but as a real implementation of the historical city with respect to current needs.

New old cities. The rebirth of German historical centers

Michele Caja
2020

Abstract

The rebirth of historical centers in some important German cities represents a unique phenomenon, due to the programmatic nature of the designers’ intentions and the variety of proposed solutions. Accompanied by a controversial debate, the cases here considered share the same principle of critical reconstruction. A principle which aims to correct the errors often carried out in a state of emergency in the post-war period and mostly based on alternative ideas of city. If this reaction – introduced by the revision of the principles of the Modern Movement since the 50s – arises from a slow awareness of the value of the historical heritage, it is with the first critical reconstruction of historical centres of the 80s that the will to recall concretely their identity is manifested. The projects here presented are to be considered a mature phase of this reflection on urban history and the possibility to reactivate it nowadays. In the search of a new identity of their old characters, emerges a dialectic relationship between historical continuity, critical reconstruction and urban design, with recurring themes like: the memory of the layouts of streets and squares, the small-scaled parcels of the blocks, the reuse of historical typologies, the individuality of each house, the representativeness of the façade, the use of traditional forms and materials. According to a growing attention to the veracity of the original urban image, these projects are intended not as a mere mise en scène, but as a real implementation of the historical city with respect to current needs.
EAAE-ARCC International Conference - The Architect and the City
9788490489819
Germany
Historical centers
Critical reconstruction
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11311/1162695
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