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Stadtarchiv Dammerstock
Modern architecture

Dammerstock housing development

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Apart from Weissenhof in Stuttgart, the Dammerstock housing development in Karlsruhe is one of the most significant testimonies to New Objectivity in southwestern Germany.

Official content of Karlsruhe

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It became the nucleus of the VOLKSWOHNUNG (established in 1922) under whose auspices it was erected by various building societies. The residential area was developed as a model social housing project by Walter Gropius, Otto Haesler and many other architects within a period of just seven months in 1929. The city of Karlsruhe had set clear priorities with its housing programme and the associated competition of 1928: Dammerstock was not intended as a playing field for the artistic avant-garde, but rather as a proving ground for realisable solutions for social housing. Walter Gropius emerged as the winner and, together with second-placed Otto Haesler and others, ultimately finished 228 of 750 planned flats. Construction of the housing development stopped due to the global economic crisis but was continued with conventional buildings in the 1930s. It was not until 1949 that the city resumed building according to Gropius’ original plans. The Dammerstock housing development, which has meanwhile been renovated in line with accepted conservation practice, is still fully inhabited today.