Europan 11

Competition Entry | Design: Hinnerk Utermann, Tim Altenhof, June 2011


(my)space suggests a forward-looking biosphere that thrives on an amalgamation of bucolic and urban spatial structures. Apartment towers adequate to the size of Ingolstadt, a German city in Bavaria, are embedded in a field of urban-gardening textures.

Both housing and urban gardening act as pioneer programs, initiating the reuse of the former Bayernoil refinery. An inspiring fusion of global and local actors build up a heterotopia for Ingolstadt.


Living as the 24-hour-part of the program, is allocated to 24-storey-towers. Gardening-lots are provided for all (my)space residents and citywide, thus irradiating beyond the site’s perimeter. Web 2.0 - high-rise offers mobile working places, a global anywhere-everywhere with media-based communication.


Gardening therefore indicates locality within a face-to-face-communication. Pin point high-rise comes up with a small-sized footprint. Hence, it is far less ground consuming while generating a necessary density. High-rise implicates the aura of young future living.


Since manifold types of apartments are comprised, the resulting variety of accommodation obviates a potential gentrification. (my)space is highly appealing to Ingolstadt’s current younger population, as well as to elderly citizens due to barrier-free stacked penthouses.





Transforming an industrial wasteland of such vastness is a unique chance. The former refinery-site has the capacity of turning into a whole new district.


How could a new district be integrated into the texture of a city? How can this process of transformation contribute to the creation of unique places within the city? If the refineries site can be given the complexity and density of a neighborhood with all of its functions, it can cope with these demands.


Taking a 75-hectare-site into consideration, our strategy seeks to establish a field of elements rather than a monumental object-building architecture—a loosely structured framework able to facilitate change over time. By combining architectural specificity with programmatic indetermination, benefit is given to the unpredictability of future developments.


Since urbanism always is a form of speculation about the future, parts of the site remain inconsiderate. A well-balanced system of backup-programs and left-over spaces help to maintain the principle of continuously changing actions of appropriation. Within a globalized world, the specifics of location grow increasingly less important. Therefore the inner structure of (my)space takes a greater role in determining the particularities of this urban place.


A discourse of the ruined and the new

A former private space is transferred into a public space. A former productive space is transferred into a leisure space, while remaining a productive space. The refinery is filled with absent potential. We offer a robust basic concept including an adaptive program in order to enhance the post-industrial narration and activate this potential. Merely preserving the past is not as relevant as finding ways to make it matter in the future.


Tactics of temporal layering

Like particles of different times, elements of a bygone industrial epoch collide with new dotting objects, and with the agricultural use of the past, excavated and reintegrated into the scheme. Different times, different programs, and the coexistence of different activities are orchestrated only preliminarily. Further uses, meanings, and intentions are part of this temporal framework. The superimposition of past, present, future, and utopian times make up the storyboard of (my)space. The narration of (my)space has an open end. Only the introduction is written. Time is a fundamental variable.


Time and Space

We introduce a simultaneity of two different concepts of temporality: that of linear time (continually progressing and represented by the apartment towers) and that of cyclical time (the four seasons represented by agricultural). 

Isolation Space: maximum privacy is found within the towers. One storey contains one living unit. 

Collision Space: the ground level accommodates all programs for encounters.


Ground Level

The horizontally expanding surface of the ground is the primary medium for program. We embrace this fertile ground with its power to create conditions of anomaly. Maximum permeability and maximum programmatic mutations are cultivated. A principle of fun and pleasure helps to introduce a maximum level of liberation into the occupation of space. Offering a variety of use and users is going to become a productive engine for Ingolstadt as a cityscape.


Urban Gardening

A neighborhood with a permanent population and their activities is generated. Less about the country life per se, what matters instead is the cross-fertilisation of urbanity and the countryside: nature, landscape and architecture. Allowing nature to gain more latitude, gardening is meant to be an experimental playground for young people and the young at heart. 


We offer three types of private landscape-spaces: agricultural areas, allotments, and dachas. Agricultural fields are meeting places that focus on the production of vegetables. Barbecueing, romping, and agriculture is possible both in dachas and allotments whereas dachas also offer accommodation. The concept of the dacha is atomised in smaller islands. Allotments are not excessively clustered in order to avoid aggregation of any particular programmatic element.

Promenading is possible on all pathways of the gardening labyrinth and especially at the strand. Cultivating own vegetables allows for food-autonomy, introduces a local scope within a global world, and makes inhabitants feel laid-back.


Cropping and following the genesis of a plant has a participatory aspect in designing one’s environment. Each gardening lot offers maintenance-facilities such as small detached houses with sprinklers and gardening tools. Trails give access to each garden. Cultivating vegetables has pedagogical aspects: children get access to processes of natural growth. People generally have a good feeling of consuming food which has not been delivered on long distances.