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Facade of the youth club

A positive change in image - youths design their own youth club

Redesign of the front of the youth club, image: Freischlad + Holz, © Stadtplanungsamt Stadt Frankfurt am Main

In 1998 part of the car park on Cheruskerweg was transformed into a youth club in the context of the ‘Einfache Stadterneuerung’ scheme. The new facility with offerings for young people served to close an important gap in the district’s infrastructure and succeeded in getting the younger residents to identify with their neighborhood. The inhospitable appearance of the car park façade had dented the facility’s image for quite some time. In an effort to remedy this, art teacher Brigitte Orth teamed up with local youths to develop ideas to improve the youth club’s façade. The project was made possible through the LOS (Lokales Kapital für Soziale Zwecke/ Local Capital for Social Purposes) project.

The project was tailor-made to address the needs of unemployed youths and young adults. It kicked off with a basic course in façade painting and a concept presentation following which the group itself produced a range of possible designs for the façade..
In agreement with Nassauische Heimstätte, which owns the car park, the design entitled “The World as a Stage” was selected, and subsequently commissioned by the City Planning Department. The entire project was financed with funds from the “Social Integrative City program”. Together with Ms. Orth, a group of eight youngsters spent more than ten weeks painting the winning design on the façade. In early November 2006 a commissioning ceremony was held for the new youth club façade.

In 2012-3 the concrete and façade of the car park on Cheruskerweg is being refurbished. Though necessary, the work impacted the façade design, which was destroyed as a result. However, the image bears an important function as a symbol representing the start of a new era in the quarter. For this reason on completion of the redevelopment, the façade will be given a new picture. Once again the artist will team up with interested youngsters from the district to dream up the new image. The district itself is responsible for the development and organization of the project; it receives additional funds from a community chest. The redesign of the façade is a typical “bottom-up” project that has a beneficial effect throughout the district.


Concept: "The Stage", © Stadtplanungsamt Stadt Frankfurt am Main