“We have a very strong sense of obligation towards our properties,” explained Stefan Degen, managing director of Deutsche Wohnen Construction and Facilities GmbH. “This is particularly true of such architecturally unique estates as White City. It is extremely important to us to preserve this architectural heritage and, at the same time, to refurbish the estate so that it meets today’s standards for modern housing.”
The sustainable refurbishment and repair of the roofs, facades, stairwells, exterior corridors and balconies began in 2009. In addition, the green spaces and courtyard areas were redesigned and restored in accordance with fundamental principles for the maintenance and care of garden monuments. Many of the cold water and waste water pipes as well as conduits for electrical wiring are also being refurbished. As part of its energy-efficient refurbishment measures Deutsche Wohnen is investing in the heat insulation of the entire ceiling of the top floor and in the energy-efficient overhaul or replacement of windows and doors in compliance with the regulations for historic monuments. As early as 2012 Deutsche Wohnen had installed an environmentally friendly combined heat and power plant in order to supply the estate with heating and hot water. The power plant has helped to reduce decisively the estate’s primary energy consumption.
“In successfully completing the measures that are part of the investment programme for UNESCO world heritage sites, we have reached an important milestone in this complex refurbishment project. In 2017 we will be able to present to our tenants an estate that has not only been refurbished in compliance with the regulations for historic monuments but that is also significantly more energy-efficient,” explained Stefan Degen.
The White City Estate was built by the three architects Bruno Ahrends, Wilhelm Büning and Otto Rudolf Salvisberg between the years 1929 and 1931. This residential estate in Aroser Allee embodies the ideals of the New Building movement with greater clarity and purity than any other estate of the 1920s in Berlin. In particular, the white, unadorned facades of the flat-roofed buildings, the two tower buildings and the bridge building have made it into an icon of residential estate design. Further information about the White City Estate and the other UNESCO estates in Berlin can be found at: www.welterbesiedlungen-berlin.de.
Deutsche Wohnen is one of the largest publicly listed residential property companies in Germany and Europe with a business focus on managing and developing its portfolio, which focuses on residential properties. As at 31 March 2015 the portfolio comprised a total of 148,900 units, of which 146,800 are residential units and 2,100 commercial properties. Deutsche Wohnen owns flats in four Berlin Modernist housing estates, which were given UNESCO world cultural heritage status in July 2008: White City, the Horseshoe Estate in Britz, the Carl Legien Estate in Prenzlauer Berg and the Ring Estate (Siemensstadt).