The reconquest of the public space

The Austrian model of the so-called “Wohnstrasse“ (residential street) – a street intended as a social meeting point as well as a counter-project to the increasing urban motorisation in the cities has been existing for a while now. In practice, however, the Wohnstrasse has had limited success.

Many residents are unaware of the fact that they are living in a Wohnstrasse. What is permitted there and what isn’t? In a Wohnstrasse, children are allowed to play on the road, ride their bikes – even against the one-way rule -and cars must only drive at walking speed. The Wohnstrasse is meant to be an extended living room for all generations.

With her project REMAKE Wohnstrasse, Sylvia Kostenzer has won first prize at the Vienna Business Agency’s ideas competition “Kinder, Kinder! New Design Ideas for a Playful City“ and succeeded in reanimating ( the topic. Her clear and imaginative graphic designs attract attention towards the tarmac. Drivers become aware that this is a place for something other than traffic. Residents are encouraged to use the road as a meeting point and leisure area.

Sylvia Kostenzer on her project:

The ideas competition “Kinder, Kinder! New Design Ideas for a Playful City“ invited creative minds, producers, and manufacturers from Vienna and beyond to submit new concepts, strategies, products and services offering solutions to the following questions, based on the way children (might) experience the city: How can responsibility and commitment become a joint venture; how can we foster a happy coexistence, and how can we protect children’s rights so that the everyday life of children in the city becomes enriched now and in future?

For more information please visit

Feature Image © Sylvia Kostenzer. 

Sylvia Kostenzer will be presenting during the Poster Exhibition of the Child in the City World Conference 24-26 September 2018 in Vienna. Click here to register for the conference. 

Author: Vienna Business Agency

The Vienna Business Agency is the first point of contact for Viennese companies, international corporations, and start-ups. It offers financial support, real estate and urban development incentives as well as free service and advice.

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