Friday, June 10, 2011

Alt-Erlaa - A Residential Masterpiece

I came across Alt-Erlaa on Behance today, and couldn't help but write a blog post about this amazing architectural giant. This complex is the largest non-municipal building in Austria, towering over a city and taking a spot as one of the biggest residential areas in Vienna.

The complex was developed back in the 70’s by Gluck, Harry & Partner, Kurt Hlaweniczka and Requat & Reinthaller of the Public Service Settlement and Institution Building. Taking over a decade to build, the complex was fully operational by 1985, and houses 3,100+ families, 3,400 parking spaces, 2 medical centers, 3 schools, 2 kindergartens, a children's day care center, a shopping center, a gymnasium, 33 leisure clubs with tennis halls and a church. It literally is an entire town in itself. To give you an idea of how many people this thing fits; it can house (comfortably) the entire population of my hometown back in New York. It also has the same amount of medical centers and schools as my hometown, but many more shops and gyms. Not to mention, this complex takes up a fraction of the land than that dying village does back in New York. To top it all off: 7 Olympic-sized pools 230+ feet in the air on the building roofs (that’s 5 more pools than my hometown).

Transportation? Not a problem, as the subway has its own stop and the highways have their own exits, all catering to Alt-Erlaa. That way, entering and leaving the “town” is a breeze.

Other than the sheer size of this complex, what also caught my eye was the landscaping both on the ground and on the first 15 floors of the buildings. With such a huge, almost entirely Bauhaus move, the complex breaks away from being labeled as another “project” by overlaying the architecture with greenery. Then, there’s accents of luxury like the sculpting of the balconies and the layout of the pathways. #gorgeous

I think if anything like this was ever built in Phoenix, it would A.) Tower over downtown, and B.) Become adopted as my new home. I love how such a gargantuan movement actually came to reality, all while showing how mass housing can be beautiful, and take up significantly less land. Truly a masterpiece in architecture.


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