The Houses with Balcony Access in Dessau-Törten

Reconstruction and Analysis of the history of the Bauhaus project in Dessau-Törten under guidiance of Hannes Meyer

Peterholzstraße 48
Mittelbreite 14

The to date little-researched Houses with Balcony Access in Dessau-Törten are the most important and - apart from the demolished Haus Nolden - the only building project realised by the building department of the historic Bauhaus. They manifest the Bauhaus’s concept of combining research-based education with practice and of processing and realising practical design tasks in the classroom. At the same time the Houses with Balcony Access are an important contribution to the then current debate concerning housing for the subsistence minimum and the debate about modern urban typologies. Built after the onset of the Great Depression in 1929/1930, they represent the start of a new phase of modern architecture: Based on a conscious rejection of the meanwhile firmly established formal and stylistic conventions, Meyer and the teachers and students involved in the project sought a consistent orientation towards efficiency and usage, which among other things led to the use of local building materials, the application of new technologies  and modern, collective housing typologies.

Due to the particular significance of the Houses with Balcony Access, in 2016 the Federal Republic of Germany applied to UNESCO to extend the scope of the World Heritage “Bauhaus and its Sites in Weimar and Dessau” to include these, thus awarding them the status of a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The German Commission for UNESCO will reach its decision in June 2017.