Cycling Visionaries Awards – Project Details

Backyard Cycle Club

Backyard Cycle Club

The backyard cycle club is located in a northern german city’s backyard. The backyard and the old buildings inside it has been transformed into a public club including a cycle way, a public repair shop and a cafe/ bar where the neighbourhood can drive around, repair their bikes and meet for a chat. The cycle way is cutting a slot into the old buildings, which creates a new interesting room.

The idea
 
In many cities there are lots of backyards, which are hidden from the street. Often the ground of these backyards are subdivided into little private courts, used for gardens and garages. The backyard cycle club is supposed to reactivate the backyard as a physical meeting place and this way generate communication between people of the neighbourhood.
 
The Lane
 
While driving with the bike across the city, the asphalt of the sidewalk suddenly changes into white rubber defining a new lane, which guides through the open door of a brick stone house (1). After entering the door one find themselves in a backyard, where the white lane makes lines and curves with a little gapping from 5%.
 
The first station on the cycle way is a repair garage (4), where everybody can borrow tools. Here the spare parts of bikes are exposed ornamentally on big wheels.
 
After the garage the cycle lane (2) is passing little gardens, windows and balcony until it reaches the transformed building, this time (3) from the other side and in the second basement. 
 
In this area there is a bar (5), where people can use there bikes as bar stools and watch the 
other cyclists passing by. The material of the lane changes from rubber to glass when it enters the building. Now one can look though it and watch people working in the garage downstairs.
 
From the bar the cycle lane goes on upwards until it reaches the roof of the building (6). There one can find a place to rest and have a view over the whole backyard. It is also a place, where theatre plays could take place. In this case the balconies and windows of the surrounding houses would be transformed into grandstand and the backyard into a theatre.
 
From the roof one can cycle on the lane downwards. After a nice round with some straight parts and some curves the lane ends again, where it began. From here you can start another round.

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Katharina Schmans
Mahlow, Germany

Category: Urban Planning and Urban Design

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