Delicatessen - Of Monotony and Another Identity for City Süd
I - Observation and analysis
At first glance, service industry and transit traffic dominate this area close to the historic city centre. The number of residents is negligible, outside of office hours the neighbourhood appears deserted. But close regard reveals the spacial layers of a turbulent history, a diversity in appearance and use that is fading:
The redundant commercial canal system is now popular only with local fishermen. Alongside, crumbling courtyards connect struggling car repair shops and small industry. A decommissioned federal railyard and abandoned 50‘s and 60’s structures await development. Dance clubs draw late night visitors, and the numerous gas stations likewise. These odd places and spaces between office buildings and office hours exhibit a rough charm. Dreaming in limbo between past uses and an unknown future they offer many possibilities to the adventurous. But tolerance for the non-functional is low. Even parking lots disappear in basement garages – lost to anyone who would care to stage a roller-skate disco on a summer night.
II - Urban Deficiencies as Opportunity
We accept the office buildings and busy streets as a vital part of the city and explore the undefined spaces between. Monotony does not hint at surprises, but in this case it leaves a lot of space available. To start a change in perception and reinstate visibility for those elements that are disappearing, we conceive temporary uses for unappreciated spaces.
with A. Willmann and C. Tach, HafenCity University Hamburg, 2008