raumlaborberlin is a network, a collective of 8 trained architects who have come together in a collaborative work-structure. We work at the intersection of architecture, city planning, art and urban intervention. We address in our work city and urban renewal as a process. We are attracted to difficult urban locations. Places torn between different systems, time periods or planning ideologies, that can not adapt. Places that are abandoned, left over or in transition that contains some relevance for the processes of urban transformations. These places are our experimentation sites. They offer untapped potential which we try to activate. This opens new perspectives for alternative usage patterns, collective ideals, urban diversity and difference.
For our projects, we form tailored teams of interdisciplinary experts. City residents are also specialists. No one knows better in each respective situation than those who have to deal with the places on a day to day basis. Thus we can gain valuable information about the history, fears, desires, existential needs, as well as deficits, that exists like an invisible network over every spatial situation. We forge active alliances between local actors and external experts. Thus we discover new areas of action and open new fields of experimentation, whose possibilities we test and examine collectively.
We call this “research-based design.” We are committed to dealing with places 1:1, discovering and using what we find within the conditions of the site. In the process of doing, we learn more through active design about the site of investigation and find new methods that are open to appropriation and upgrades the existing. We do not solve problems, rather we initiate processes that give actors the opportunity to know, understand and use the city and its dynamics, as well as its possibilities.