The Federal Office for Building and Regional Planning

Research Project: People and Success Stories 2019

Project briefing

  • Status Completed
  • Project duration November 2018 – February 2020
  • Programme MORO

The focus of the competition "Menschen und Erfolge 2019" was "Living in small towns and communities of rural areas" and searched for projects that have successfully contributed to the improvement of housing and the living environment. A total of 136 entries were submitted, from which eight award winners and eight recognitions were selected by a jury and awarded at a public event.

Projekt duration: November 2018 – February 2020


In 2019, the focus of the competition "Menschen und Erfolge" was on housing with the motto "Livable small towns and communities in rural areas". In doing so, the competition flanked the federal government´s housing offensive, which has introduced a number of measures to promote housing and ensure affordable housing since 2018.


Against this background, the competition searched for projects that create a recognizable added value for the community and stabilize or improve the local living situation. Projects could be submitted in the following areas:

Subject area 1: Developing what has been built - Creating new quality:
The building structure is crucial for the recognition and identification of small towns and communities in rural areas. However, in many places, buildings are empty. Therefore, it was of interest how people, initiatives or municipalities deal with this situation. For example: How were vacant residential buildings renovated, modernised or rebuilt to meet the changing housing requirements such as generational-oriented or accessibility? But also new high-quality housing offers, such as multigenerational houses or suitable apartments for elderly People in connection with care and community facilities, were of interest of the subject area 1.

Subject area 2: Experience the public - enable encounters:
Public spaces have a high priority in small towns and municipalities. As meeting points and places of leisure activities, they increase the attractiveness of the local centres and the living environment. As a result, it is very important to create opportunities for encounters and to upgrade public spaces or to transform them in barrier-free areas. In this subject area, projects were presented that show how central squares and open spaces were upgraded, redesigned or revived. This included new meeting rooms, for example community houses with services for less mobile people such as children and young people or elderly, socially disadvantaged or new people that have moved to the town.

Subject area 3: Creating frameworks – giving support:
To supply appropriate housing, to solve the vacancy problem or to ensure the quality of stay depend on an environment that makes it possible to remedy the situation: support ser-vices such as internet platforms or apps that provide new forms of housing can help as well as traditional advice from municipalities on the conversion of vacant buildings. In this subject area projects were searched that offered digital solutions for vacant buildings or land management as well as the support of interested people to buy and reuse old buildings or create and/or market new forms of housing.

Submissions were open until 14 July 2019.

The contractor for the project was SPRINT - scientific policy consultant PartG.


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