Wohnen ohne Auto (Living without a car) is a co-housing project, developed in a process of

participatory design with a community of future residents. The project features a series of strategies which aim to minimize the superfluous, estabilish an attitude towards sharing and encourage an environmentally conscious behaviour.

The building is part of the reconversion of the former airport area in Munich-Riem. Its core point lies in the voluntary renouncement of car ownership by the inhabitants, which is reflected in a sustainable planning approach.

The overall design is developed with attention to life quality, atmospheric materials and lighting conditions, besides sustainability, low mantainance and social inclusion principles.

Through the main focus on spatial optimization and reduction of private areas in favour of shared spaces, Wohnen ohne Auto inverts the trend of increasing floorspace, buildng costs and energy

consumed per person. The communal areas are no longer limited to the distributive spaces, but they are extended to storages, a hobby room, a workshop, a rooftop terrace and a guest apartment. Common spaces do not only allow for a reduction of the resources needed but also foster social interaction through the creation of shared experiences.

Within the flats, reducing to the very minimum some functional rooms, allows to wider up the living areas: the contrast between the spaces’ size completely nullifies the perception of inhabiting small apartments. The West facade is fragmented to allow all the flats southern light, while ensuring privacy to the balconies.

The possibility the owners have to directly influence the design choices, not only in their private apartments, but in the whole building, enables them to identify themselves entirely with their new home and create a solid community spirit. This collective awareness is mirrored also in some craft interventions that the residents carried out themselves.

Wohnen ohne Auto is an example of the key role of architectural design in a overall rethinking of our attitude to consumption of resources, collective responsibility and social conscience.