Design studio/Professor Martin Boesch

Keywords: questioning what we take for granted / temporary architecture / improve quality through new structures

The historical center of the city of Salzburg has been protected as a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site against structural changes since 1997. Salzburg, once the residence of a prince-bishop, possessed great importance in the region and was one of the great clerical capitals of central Europe. Framed by the Mönchsberg and Kapuzinerberg and dominated by the fortress Hohensalzburg, the old city represents a unique architectural ensemble. The cathedral and the numerous important churches with their towers and domes, the monasteries of St. Peter and Nonnberg, the varied mixture of medieval and Baroque homes, all of this forms an impressive skyline and is a widely known picture around the world.

Several students in the class of Martin Boesch explored the question of whether and how it is possible today to build in the historic old city. Does the unity of buildings and squares that grew over the centuries still possess validity today? Is it possible to improve public space in the city by way of targeted measures? Most importantly, possibilities of temporary building were explored. The designs include a proposal for a Grand Café, a university expansion, and an ephemeral theater. All projects work with existing structures and interpret them carefully as antithesis towards established taboos.

Photos: Günter Richard Wett