Decaying Landscape


Fabian Liszt, Doris Scheicher, Romana Prokop 

Today’s thinking is dominated by the question of profitability. (Temporary use is mostly about the question of filling a gap between two commercial uses.) If a building or a place is not able to sustain itself economically it is ether replaced by a new one or isolated from the city. What is the most probable scenario to happen then? Plundering? Demolition? Decay?
But isn’t there a potential within leaving a place to itself? Can it, for example, become a projection screen for the city and its multiple dimensions and layers?
Here the urban strategy is to discover the creative potential of a so called ruin. We temporary free the major part of the WU building from its expectation of fulfilling a prescribed function (social or commercial). For this time span the building shall be staged and observed within its dynamic process of reinterpretation.
Even though a ruin is a temporary phenomenon and probably will be replaced by functional programs due to redevelopment, it could also be used as a very direct and radical way to reveal the potentials, problems and needs of a specific place within the city to be then taken up into the rethinking of an area.

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Decaying Landscape


Fabian Liszt, Doris Scheicher, Romana Prokop 

The building is divided into two spaces: A small space that is renovated and kept for visitors to observe and the other part of the building that is observed while being left for itself as a ruin space. The visitor space consists of the former “Audimax” that it transformed into a cinema and the nearby circulation core. It can be accessed through the courtyard at the main entrance side. The floors around the core are separated from the existing and are turned into autonomous platforms. Two elevators are kept operated for the visitors to move vertically through the place. The platforms are equipped with an additional structural framework and a new glass envelope that separates it from the other space. It is the public’s viewing glass, so to say, into the ruin and a place where people can meet. Movies can be shown in the cinema and public events or discussions can take place there. Throughout the years the way the ruin space is perceived through the glass could be played with and it could inspire people to imagine things happening and reinterpret their surroundings. Even more, it is meant to provoke them to claim this left over potential for themselves.

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Decaying Landscape


Fabian Liszt, Doris Scheicher, Romana Prokop 

The ruin space doesn’t remain static. It is changing through the years.

It is not controlled. However the idea is to set interventions at strategic points in the beginning in order to emphasize a process of change there. The plans of the WU we show are turned into maps where structural behaviors, weaknesses or special places in the building are being registered. We begin with analyzing the WU-building focusing four categories: wind, water, plants and use by humans (and animals?). Things we map go from potential sagging of ceilings and tension areas to weather sides or access point. Every category is represented by one intervention at a strategic point.  These interventions shall channel the forces to a focal point where they shall get visible to be observed from the viewing platforms.