1950s Housing Projects

As a large urban development from the post-war period, Karl-Marx-Allee, together with the Hansaviertel in the west of Berlin, represents building in two political systems. Like few other streets in Berlin, it illustrates the city’s eventful history in the context of different ideologies. The East-West Magistrale was always more than an ordinary street: a demonstration of socialist urban planning, a playing field for experimental construction, a site of large-scale military marches and popular protests. During the guided tour you will have the opportunity to get to know the most famous section, the houses in the “Zuckerbäcker style” between Strausberger Platz and Proskauer Straße – with the buildings by Hermann Henselmann and Ludmilla Herzenstein and the Café Sibylle. However, the tour also includes the so-called “second construction phase” between Strausberger Platz and Alexanderplatz. It bears impressive witness to the transformation of the GDR regime in the 1960s towards socialist modernity. This part of Karl-Marx-Allee is characterised by simple eight to ten-storey apartment buildings in prefabricated slab construction and striking solitary buildings such as the Café Moskau restaurant and the Kino International.

A visit to the flat at Frankfurter Tor No. 1 is also possible on request.

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    Project selection

    Kino International Josef Kaiser und Heinz Aust
    Galerie Central Berlin am Straußberger Platz
    Highrise at Weberwiese Hermann Henselmann
    Café Sybille
    Arcade House Ludmilla Herzenstein
    Kino Kosmos Josef Kaiser und Heinz Aust
    Frankfurter Tor Hermann Henselmann

    Duration approx. 2.5 h