L.just in the city center is becoming more and more of a dream for a few people. Affordable living space is scarce anyway, and in many places the plots are now so expensive that new buildings are actually only worthwhile in the high-price segment. The Erhardtstrasse 10 project by real estate developer Euroboden is no exception. The now completed apartment complex with more than 20 units is located in the best inner city location in Munich: right on the Isar, the fun-loving Gärtnerplatzviertel at the back, the Deutsches Museum and the European Patent Office as neighbors.
Anyone who buys here must bring a lot of capital with them. Nevertheless, the Erhardtstrasse 10 project is exemplary: unlike many comparable development projects, it not only scores points with its location, underground car park and elevator directly into the apartment. Buyers can also look forward to architectural qualities for their money: good floor plans, elaborate facades, beautiful materials. Not a matter of course in a real estate segment in which vulgar classicist cleaning boxes with listlessly stacked apartments are marketed as a luxury.
The complex also perceives the urban space
For the planning, Euroboden hired the Berlin architect Thomas Kröger, who has made a name for himself with residential and holiday homes that are beyond the average – powerful buildings, loaded with references to local construction. Erhardtstrasse 10 is Kröger’s first extensive residential construction project, and he has succeeded in transferring the advantages of his houses to a larger scale.
Euroboden has been working with well-known German and international architecture firms for years, and the portfolio currently includes projects with David Chipperfield, Muck Petzet and Arno Brandlhuber, Peter Haimerl and David Adjaye. The Munich-based company aggressively advertises these partnerships – it starts with the ambitious name affix “architectural culture”. The project on the Isar with its eye-catching zigzag pattern also reflects this claim. This is not only nice for the buyers: the complex, which consists of four building parts and two courtyards, also perceives the urban space. To the front, towards the Isar, the house with its facade fits into the row of listed old buildings without pseudo-historical ingratiation. It forms a small arcade on the ground floor, creating some space for the narrow walkway in front of the entrance.
Towards the back, towards the backyard landscape of the district, the architecture makes contact with the neighboring buildings; despite the density, pleasant courtyards are created. Also not exactly standard on the real estate market: the elaborate facade design on the front side facing the street and river, with small round pillars, patterned plastered fields and large windows, runs through both courtyards to the rear house. The level often drops rapidly towards the rear, on bleak perforated facades with glued-on thermal insulation.
“Architectural culture works in all locations and in all segments”
“If we build here in this location, on a privately financed property, at the current prices, we will never be able to build cheap apartments,” says Euroboden founder and managing partner Stefan Höglmaier on a tour of the project. “Even if we build so cheaply, it will not succeed.” His approach is rather to try to give something back to the city, “to create a city building block that can exist in a listed context”.
Euroboden is now trying to counter the dilemma of the absurdly risen land prices in another way: with building projects in rather remote-sounding places such as Berlin-Marzahn or the Munich suburb of Dornach. “Inner cities have become so expensive that we have lost a very large target group for us,” says Höglmaier. “That is why Euroboden is now pursuing projects with which we can show that architectural culture works in all locations and in all segments.”
The icing on the cake at Erhardtstrasse 10, however, is the two-storey apartment in the roof of the front building, with a roof terrace and a panoramic view of the Isar and the Deutsches Museum up to the church towers of the old town – it will always have to remain a dream, even for most of the few.