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Right next to the renovated railway estate, four apartment buildings with an innovative modular solid timber construction, offering 24 apartments, are taking shape. Advantages of the timber construction include low maintenance outlay and the lasting durability of the building. Residents benefit first and foremost, however, from a healthy indoor climate and a pleasant, natural living atmosphere. Accordingly, the wood remains visible in the interior walls and ceilings of the Elstal apartment buildings. The construction progress is well advanced - on 27 August 2018 Deutsche Wohnen was celebrating its topping out ceremony.  

 

Monuments for living

In the listed railway settlement’s historic buildings, the 158 apartments and five commercial units have already been completely modernised in a way that is faithful to the original. Comprehensive works were carried out on facades, interiors, roofs, doors, windows, bathrooms and heating. This paid off – not least because the estate also enjoys listed status today.

 

Certifications and awards

The new buildings in Elstal will be exemplary in terms of sustainability. Accordingly, the aim is to achieve what is known as ‘Platinum’ category certification from the DGNB, the German Sustainable Building Council. This rewards building sustainability above and beyond the complete life cycle. Deutsche Wohnen also picked up the 2015 Deutsche Bauherrenpreis for modernisation for the restoration of the historic estate.

Garden estates as a model

The estate was built in the 1920s and 1930s by the railway housing company. The homes came in all different sizes with different fittings, and offered a home for railway workers from all kinds of different ranks. They were designed for self-sufficiency, with large gardens used for growing fruit and vegetables. There are tenants living in Elstal even today who have known the development since it was established and have grown old with the estate. Elstal enjoys a leafy setting just outside the city of Berlin – with good rail links. The city limits are also easily reached by car via Bundesstrasse 5. There is also a bus heading towards the city.