Build Together – Learn Together is a participatory building in Mannheim. 18 students of the Faculty of Architecture at TU Kaiserslautern built a community centre together with 25 refugees. The refugees were given the opportunity to actively shape their environment and acquire new skills, which will be useful, even if they cannot stay in Germany on a permanent basis. The students were able to make an active and positive contribution to the refugee crisis. As future architects they contribute expertise that may appear luxurious in a refugee camp at first glance, but is even more important upon closer inspection: the creation of pleasant places and high-quality architecture. After pinning down the outlines together with the refugees, the students developed design, permission and execution drawings as well as visualizations and cost planning in the course of a very intensive summer semester.
All structural elements and surfaces are made of untreated timber. For protection from moisture during the construction process and in order to manufacture these parts in only six weeks, large-format components were prefabricated in a hangar of the former military facility and assembled on site with high speed and precision. The light weight of timber allowed for the transport of large elements by simple means and simultaneously reduced foundations to few singular footing foundations by incorporating the walls as trusses. In this way, both the costs for foundations and the negative ecological impact of concrete were reduced to a minimum.
In order to make the best use of many helping hands and to reduce building costs, no large machinery was employed. Instead, simple and material-saving but labour-intensive constructions were used. Walls and trusses made of simple battens 3 by 5 cm are symbolic representants of this method: Screwed together to a grid of five vertically and diagonally arranged layers, they build a highly efficient supporting structure for walls and trusses. The ornamental structure results in the building‘s unique architectural expression. Multiplied by the interplay with light, it is recognized by the refugees as a reminder of oriental ornaments and as an inviting gesture of identification in a foreign place.
- Build together, learn together
- Students of Atelier U20, Faculty of Architecture, TU Kaiserslautern
- Timber construction:
- Stefan Krötsch
- Structure and material:
- Jürgen Graf
- Digital tools:
- Andreas Kretzer
- Research assistants:
- Sebastian Rauch (site supervision), Christian Weisgerber
- Johannes Ackermann, Soheyl Aslani, Sandra Gressung, Sonja Hiegle, Annika Koch, Alina Kohl, Tobias Kohlstruck, Bei Liu, Konrad Peter, Viktor Poteschkin, Sascha Ritschel, Arved Sartorius, Manuel Scheib, Nicolas Treitz, Tobias Vogel, Lukas Weber, Lu Yuan, Ying Zhang
- Manneh Alassan, Barry Alieu, Momodou Bah, Lamin Bakare, Alhagie Darboe, Ousman Dema, Abubacarr Gagigo, Yankuba Gitteh, Amanuel Habtom, Fatti Ismael, Lucky Iyare, Adama Jallow, Dawda Jallow, Demba Jawo, Hamadi Runda Jawo, Haruna Jawo, Kebiru Danlad Momoh, Luke Okoeguale, Ifeanyi Okolie, Stanley Okoro, Emmanuel Onyemarin, Sanna Sacka, Sanyang Seiney, Dembo Tunkara, Bright Uwubuedere
- Bauunternehmung Streib, Handwerkscenter Holz, Edgar Körber, SAM Truck
- 250 sqm