Sophie Stollenwerk // Fabrikschloss Schönforst - A new center on old walls



The focus of this master thesis is on a historically significant object and its property near Aachen-Forst. My research revealed that this site is regrettably decaying into a wasteland and the building is vacant. In particular, the central location, the size of the property and the historical building substance offer many opportunities for upgrading the site. The challenge and potential at the same time is how to deal with the two monuments: the façade of the knight's estate from 1850 and the ruins of a moated castle from the 14th century lying under the ground. The reactivation of this area could significantly upgrade the Forst district and initiate new impulses for further developments.

Location and typology
As a suburb, Forst serves its inhabitants mainly for living. For work, shopping and leisure activities, the majority commute to the city center. Along Trierer Straße, a number of stores for daily needs, such as bakeries, snack bars and stores, accumulate. However, there is a lack of public spaces with a quality of stay and a corresponding range of uses. Schönforst is a heterogeneous district that unites different nationalities, is home to an aging population and, as a socially deprived neighborhood, needs a selected attention. It lacks a place to come together that functions regardless of religion, culture and age. In order to unite all stakeholders and create new qualities of stay, I set myself the task of designing a new neighborhood center for Schönforst on the site of the old Fabrikschloss.

By removing individual parts of the building and adding new structures, a central courtyard is created. In doing so, the heterogeneity, which is the character of this place that has grown together over time, is preserved through the diverse design. In addition, the urban axis that runs from the church directly to the old gate is taken up and continued in the form of a playful passage through the building. Through the gate, visitors enter the central courtyard, which can be used as a marketplace and event area. Further on, he crosses the old Scheddach hall, inside of which another inner courtyard opens up, which is used by the festival hall. From there, a footbridge allows to cross and admire the exposed ruins of the old castle. The path leads into the park, which is completed by a pavilion.


Examiner: Univ.-Prof. Dr.-Ing. Christian Raabe
Co-Examiner: Univ.-Prof. Dipl.-Ing. Uwe Schröder
Supervisor: Stefanie Kerner, Hendrik Reinhold

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