Karl Ehn, Karl Marx-Hof, Vienna, Austria, 1927-1930. © Ana Tostões, 2015.
Housing for the greatest number

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DOI:

https://doi.org/10.52200/65.A.O5TLBHP9

Keywords:

Modern Movement, Modern architecture, Modern housing, Post-war housing, Welfare architecture, Mass housing

Abstract

Addressing a broader vision, entitled “Housing for All”, this issue is dedicated to the welfare era, when governments across the world established ambitious housing programs to provide housing for the greatest number and improve the citizens’ living conditions, as a symbol of a modern and democratic society. This bold course of action involved radical changes in the built environment, through new approaches to architectural design and experiments in the use of materials and techniques, the creation of space, and social transformation. Nowadays, understanding how to deal with this legacy presents a major challenge, in a continuously changing context, from the technical obsolescence of buildings that no longer meet today’s demanding standards, or fast-moving sociocultural, political and economic values. The aim of this docomomo Journal 65 is to outline how these vast cultural and political ambitions were materialized in various countries, and to analyze the contemporary challenges they face. More than five decades later, are these buildings and neighborhoods resilient or obsolete? In addition to the changes that postmodern society has brought in ways of living, issues such as the demand for spatial and functional transformation, and the updating of regulations on fire, seismic stability, user safety and energy efficiency, are now part of the contemporary agenda. How can these sites be kept alive while satisfying sustainability and contemporary ideas of comfort?

How to Cite

Tostões, A. (2021). Housing for the greatest number. Docomomo Journal, (65), 2–3. https://doi.org/10.52200/65.A.O5TLBHP9

Published

2021-08-31

Issue

Section

Editorial

Author Biography

Ana Tostões, University of Lisbon

Ana Tostões PhD is an architect, architecture critic and historian, and is president of Docomomo International and Editor of the Docomomo Journal (www.docomomo.com). Her mandate in Docomomo International, since 2010, has been marked by the transformation of the organisation into a truly worldwide network and the Docomomo Journal into the only international periodical which regularly provides a critical look at the contemporary context focused on a broad vision of the Modern Movement Architecture and its reuse. She is a Full Professor at Técnico, University of Lisbon, where she teaches Theory of Architecture and Critical History, and coordinates the Architectonic Culture research group.