Futureproof village realm
Alpen is a municipality in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. Felixx is working on a staged transformation of the public spaces and landscapes of the village.
Unlike many other villages, Alpen has a vibrant business community. It is very well connected to main infrastructures and situated in a beautiful rural environment. To fight the challenges of rural shrinkage, these qualities have to be sustained in order to provide qualitative living conditions, motivating young families to settle in Alpen. Transforming the center into a more urban variant of itself has proved to be a common but insufficient strategy to achieve this. Therefore we moved the focus from the center to the entire community: not one compact transformation, but a large set of acupunctural interventions and measures.
Felixx developed 3 strategies to preserve the current economic conditions, strengthen the social facilities and improve the ecological performance of the village. The first strategy creates a characteristic village road for shops and commercial functions. The second strategy unites all existing landscaped within and around the village, turning them into an active green belt with multigenerational facilities. The third strategy transforms the existing center of the village into a communal living room. These 3 strategies are divided into 9 projects that will be constructed during the next years.
The first project is the Neue Mitte, turning the center into a communal living room. The entire area is paved with a shared space carpet. Inlayed flower patterns animate the specific spaces. Custom-made furniture elements are designed as scaled up living room elements. The different objects were shown as 1:1 mockup models to the inhabitants, during a festive participation event.