Collective City Making

How commoning practices foster inclusivity


  • Julia Köpper Institute of Architecture | Technische Universität Berlin
  • Agnes Katharina Müller Institute of Architecture | Technische Universität Berlin



urban commons, Inclusive Urbanism LAB, PLATZprojekt, citizen participation, spatial practice


The article addresses the concept of urban commons, specifically the ways in which it can contribute to inclusive urbanism. We consider how communities appropriate urban spaces, how commons mediate participation in urban development as well as the role of the physical configuration in fostering inclusiveness. The “PLATZprojekt” in Hanover, Germany, is taken as a case study.

A container village of about 3,000 m2, the PLATZprojekt is understood as an experiment in offering people a self-organized space, one they can actively shape, a space to implement their ideas and to provoke discussion about their city. Initiated by a group of young skateboarders, it was funded by the BBSR[1]. Situated on a vacant lot in an industrial zone relatively close to the inner city, the PLATZprojekt seeks to provide space for projects and ideas that cannot be realised within the gentrified neighbourhoods of dense and commodified European metropolises.

We analyse the PLATZprojekt as a permanent “commoning process” that encompasses different levels of accessibility and represents a positive example of inclusive urbanism while at the same time revealing various limitations.

[1] Federal Institute for Research on Building, Urban Affairs and Spatial Development

Author Biographies

Julia Köpper, Institute of Architecture | Technische Universität Berlin

Architect, urban researcher and urban planner. She is founding partner of the architecture collective Octagon in Leipzig and is currently a research associate at the CUD at TU Berlin (Germany).

Agnes Katharina Müller, Institute of Architecture | Technische Universität Berlin

Architect, researcher and lecturer for urban design and urban planning at the Technische Universität Berlin (Germany).