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Zschornewitz
Zschornewitz power station: only a few traces remain of what was once the largest brown-coal power station in the world. In the foreground, the works Colony





 


1989
The Bauhaus discovers Zschornewitz as a remarkable architectural location in an industrial landscape
 
 


1990
/ 91 Students are commissioned by the Bauhaus to make initial analyses and design proposals for the Colony
 
 


1992
The power station and the Colony are declared historical monuments
The high capacity brown-coal power station is shut down
 
 


1993
/ 94 Partial demolition of the industrial plant, the historical core building of the power station is renovated by the owner
Preparations begin to redevelop the Colony
 
 


1995
The power station reopens as a »Cultural Power Station« (jazz, theater, classical and other cultural events, exhibitions, conferences)
 
 


1996
The Colony is accepted as an EXPO project - a Bauhaus conference on »What shall we do with the derelict?« is held in preparation for establishing a foundation for »Industrial Culture«
 
 


1997
/ 99 Redevelopment of the Colony; public cultural events in the power station, preparations are made for making it the seat of suitable businesses
 
 
 
 

Zschornewitz colony

a new life after coal
 
In 1915, after a fifteen-month construction period, the then largest steam power station in the world was erected near rich deposits of coal. At the same time, the superbly designed »Colony« - a works housing estate modeled on the Garden City - was constructed.

For a good seventy-five years, the power station and the brown-coal pits left their mark on daily life in the industrial community of Zschornewitz. Following the economic restructuring of the GDR, the pits and the power station were gradually closed down in 1991. In the process, significant parts of the town's economic basis disappeared.
At the initiative of the Bauhaus, the Colony and parts of the power station were listed as historical monuments in 1992. Following very controversial discussions in the initial phase, a redevelopment concept was evolved in 1993/94 with the aim of revitalizing the Colony in a way compatible with both social aspects and historical preservation. The goal was to win over public and private owners for constructive participation, as some of the row houses had already been privatized in 1991 and 1992. Hence, for the past six years, the community has made sure to consult the house owners comprehensively on all questions requiring support for building plans related to historical preservation. In June 1996, the Colony housing estate was acknowledged as an EXPO project. Since then extensive renewal measures have been carried out on both the buildings and public spaces.

The historical power station is the region's first redeveloped industrial monument. And as a »Cultural Power Station«, it now has a new life: theater, acoustic art, conferences, exhibitions, and serves as a nucleus for new (as well as commercial) perspectives for a place that once wrote history and now suffers from high unemployment.


The »Power Station Axis«
 
project management power station:
Harald Kegler, Jens Köster
project management colony:
Holger Schmidt
partners / external management:
Vereinigte Energiewerke AG; Berlin
Gemeinde Zschornewitz
Fritz Hubert, Architekt; München
EXPO 2000 Sachsen-Anhalt GmbH
Künstler / innen aus der Region,
    aus ganz Deutschland und Europa
 
 

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