Wroclaw

This rather run-down collection of modernist buildings located just past the Centennial Hall and Wrocław Zoo is what remains of one of six model housing estates built by the Deutscher Werkbund in the late 1920s. Completed in just three months for the 1929 Wohnung und Werkraum Ausstellung (Living and Work Space Exhibition), the estate was meant to showcase new, more efficient building technologies and designs. The 32 structures were assembled from prefabricated elements on site, significantly lowering costs and shortening construction time. To demonstrate versatility, participating architects designed single-family homes, blocks of flats, a hostel ‘for singles and childless couples’ (ul. Kopernika 9, O-6), and even a preschool (ul. Wróblewskiego 18, O-7), which had to be rebuilt after burning down in a 2006 fire. While today the historical housing development might be underwhelming to all but the most hardcore architecture geeks, it is finally getting a long-overdue facelift. Expect to find a bit of a construction site when you visit and pardon the dust. Handy maps and more detailed information can be found at www.wuwa.eu. Get here by taking tram no. 10 from ‘Rynek’ or 4 from ‘Galeria Dominikańska’ to ‘Tramwajowa’ or just walking from Centennial Hall. 

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