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After more than 18 months digital communication, the first in-person EFL conference took place in Stuttgart from 20-22 October. Hosted by EFL member housing assocation FLÜWO, the attending members joined 2 days of key note speaches, panel discussion, site visits, group dinners and interactive workshops about the plans for next year. At the meeting we also welcomed a new member: housing association ‘Zonnige Kempen’ from Flanders (Belgium).

The conference key note speeches included Prof. Dr. Hubert Klumpner (ETH Zürich) and his colleage PhD Melanie Fessel about the global challenges connected with urban renewal. Cases from South America were used to ampliy the common problems in cities from a global perspective. This presentation was followed by Andreas Hofer, “chief intendant” of IBA27, the international building exposition in Stuttgart. After the coffee break, Marije Raap, City of Amsterdam, explained the housing ambitions of this city and the drive towards an undivided city, open for people of all ages and income groups. The key note session was closed by Dr. Steffen Wetzstein (Erfurt University, URBACT) who fired questions to the audience with regard to the needed sustainable transition on the one hand, and affordability of housing on the other side.

In the afternoon the conference attendees had the possibility to participate in site visits to the famous Stuttgart Bahnproject 21 and to two residential area’s in Stuttgart North: Stuttgart Rot (also IBA27 site !) and Hallschlag. During the explanatory conversations at the site project Rot, the participants also learned how a group of cooperating housing cooperatives (Wohnungsgenossenschaften) planned their demolishment of existing buildings and construcion of new ones, took place in close cooperation with the local residents.

The presentations can be downloaded by clicking on the links (in blue).

The second day of the conference was mainly filled with internal workshops and the General Assembly.

EFL will be back with the next conference in Paris (May 2022).