The second selected plot that complies with our research criteria with respect to existing infrastructures, besides the one on Fabriksgasse (District of Gries, Graz), is in the District of Gösting. It is located on a side street off the Wienerstrasse, one of Graz’s major access roads, leading from there to the centre of the historical Gösting village. Due to its proximity to Interspar shopping centre, the plot’s location can be described as central. The building site is situated on a narrow strip between Wienerstrasse and the raised railway embankment and along Wienerstrasse, where there is a mixture of commercial and residential buildings. According to City of Graz Urban Planning Department, this area is designated as a local centre. Currently, the parcel of land in question is accessed via the narrow side of the plot on the Wienerstrasse. Due to the fact that the Thalerbach stream flows along the longer side of the parcel, the plot lies somewhat beneath the street level of Exerzierplatzstrasse. There is a bus stop on the corner of Exerzierplatzstrasse and Wienerstrasse.
Selected plot Exerzierplatzstrasse
Built up area | building area classified as commercial development area | building density 0.5-1.5 | size of plot 1649 m² + 1816 m² | plot no. 1065, 1251, 383/22 | cadastral community no. 63112 | folio no. 413 | District of Gösting | plot with existing buildings (warehouse and residential building) | protection zone, no | plot prices 100-276 €/m² and residential rents 8.60-15.90 €/m²
From an urbanistic perspective, the plot lies within a development area that, for the most part, has been settled since the end of the Second World War. Along the access road, the Wienerstrasse, there is a predominance of car-friendly commercial buildings due to the high amount of traffic in the area. The odd detached house and other residential buildings can also be found along the road. Both to the west and east, residential blocks from the 1960s and 1970s, set back from the street, characterise the streetscape due to their size. Recently, a new village complex consisting of various blocks of flats, shops and other amenities – the Wohnpark Gösting – was erected behind the railway embankment. The area is accessible to public transport (bus) connecting it to Graz city centre. In this area, the principle of the functional city* is again discernible; it is characterised by the segregation of a mixed fragmented urban structure through the functional separation of living and working quarters.
Here too, similar to the plot on Fabriksgasse, low, village-like buildings alongside commercial and residential buildings are confronted with the urban density of residential tower blocks (vertical city).
Based on the Learning from Las Vegas research paper (1968) by Venturi/Scott Brown/Izenour, we commenced our spatial urbanistic investigation by conducting field research on a walk through the area. In an area where cars play the main role and all errands are run by car, there is a lack of cycle paths and pedestrian connections, e.g. to the newly erected Billa supermarket at Wohnpark Gösting on the other side of the railway embankment. Photographs were taken of the impressions gained and then analysed.
*(Athens Charter 1933, German translation 1962)
Hilpert, Thilo (Hg.) (1988): Le Corbusiers „Charta von Athen“ Texte und Dokumente. Kritische Neuausgabe. Bauwelt Fundamente 56. 2. Aufl. Viewg & Sohn. Braunschweig / Wiesbaden.
Izenour, S., Venturi, R. Scott Brown, D. (2001). Lernen von Las Vegas : Zur Ikonographie und Architektursymbolik der Geschäftsstadt (2. Aufl., 1., unveränd. Nachdr. ed.). Basel [u.a.]: Birkhäuser.