Bau an! (Halle/Leipzig) /// Comment of the jury: "The Bau An! (cultivation, extension) project takes the programmatic transformation of the city through ruralization as its theme. The authors propose the use of vacant prefabricated concrete apartment buildings for the cultivation of select mushrooms as a first step towards a subsistence economy in shrinking cities. The economic, agricultural and the structural engineering aspects are explained in detail.
During the first session the jury found the proposal to be a symbolic confrontation with the post-socialist situation, however they warned about the all too literal idea of 'going moldy', which would force people in shrinking cities to return to a previous stage of development. Despite the jury's reservations, the project was resolutely and provocatively followed towards its implementation, as it purposely positioned itself as a positive alternative to (misguided) public investment in Eastern Germany and strove for the realization of a cooperatively organized business.
The project deals with the positive-negative dualism of shrinkage. Shrinking is not associated with decay, but is seen instead as an opportunity to create new infrastructure from abandoned buildings, which can be used for purposes of self-sufficiency. Architecture gains a new significance by becoming a productive source for the agricultural city."