Preparing the urban design of the model housing estate WerkbundStadtBerlin, the development of the site has been studied by exploring a specific Berlin house type: the house with front court which has been investigated by the German architect K.F. Schinkel in his Entwurf zu einem Städtischen Wohngebäude. The repetition of this type, treated by a range of different “participating architects, would have supplied the site with a degree of natural variation. The domestic character of the front courts further contributes to that. The building type accommodates a high level of programmatic differentiation.
Further exploration of “die Schinkelvariante demonstrates how spacious terraces determine both the court and the dwelling. The edge of the ensemble is shaped by house types which mark the public territory in a more direct manner.
The underground parking garage follows the perimeter of the housing above. This reduces foundation costs. Furthermore, the streets and front courts allow the planting of trees and natural infiltration of rain.