Werner Sobek Designs Refugee Housing That Anyone Would Be Proud and Happy to Live In

©. Zooey Braun

Germany has a lot of refugees to house in a hurry, and prefabrication is one way to speed up the process. Architect and builder Werner Sobek shows how its done with a project in Winnenden, 20 kilometres northeast of Stuttgart. Sobek has been building high quality modular housing for years with the company Aktivhaus.

entry to units

© Zooey Braun

The development, designed to accommodate 200 asylum seekers, is not the usual emergency housing, often made out of shipping containers or really inexpensive prefabs. Instead,

The high-quality 22 units - coated externally with a larch wood façade - are resource-saving, recyclable, free of emissions and are delivered completely dismantled. The manufacturing company AH-Aktiv-Haus assures turnkey realization within a few weeks.
interior sobek

© Zooey Braun

The modules are made from larch and are built to last 50 years. They will not just be used for refugees (which is controversial) but for other housing needs. According to Baunetz.de:

The Mayor of the Swabian town of Winnenden, Hartmut Holzwarth, is aware of the fact that this is not just needed for the accommodation of refugees: "Even without refugee access, it is estimated that there will be a need for 40,000 additional apartments in Baden-Württemberg in the coming years Per year. In addition, it is estimated that some 30,000 apartments will be required each year for the recognized asylum seekers and their families who have been rescued, "he says in the Stuttgarter Zeitung.
interior perspective

© Aktivhaus

I can find very little documentation about this project other than this one article, and judging from the photographs also found on the Aktivhaus site, the photos might be used in the article for illustrative purposes rather than being the actual finished project in Winnenden.

interior detail

© Zooey Braun

It is all designed to a Triple Zero standard that is worth noting:

The Aktivhaus is based on the Triple Zero® standard developed by Werner Sobek and symbolizes the vision of a sustainable building. A Triple Zero® building consumes no more energy than it generates from renewable sources (Zero Energy Building) on average each year. It produces no carbon emissions or other substances that are harmful to people and the environment (Zero Emission Building) and can be fully reintegrated into the cycle of materials (Zero Waste Building). It can form a self-sufficient energy network with buildings, power generators, energy storage systems and energy consumers.

Seriously nice and green housing that anyone would be proud and happy to live in.

exterior vertical

© Zooey Braun