To create more living space within the city without sealing more land, we are extending the existing building of Café Ada in Wuppertal by adding four additional floors. We will then construct one representative residential unit of our design for the final of the competition.

The project’s innovations are aimed at being carbon neutral in urban neighborhoods while improving the socio-cultural environment.

For the extension of Café Ada, our sustainability concept is based on sufficiency, efficiency, consistency, and resilience. These ideas are pursued in three sub-areas: Architecture, Energy, and Construction.

The upper three floors at Café Ada will offer a mix of apartments for one to four people, additional common rooms, and co-working spaces.

The wooden building will sustain itself by reducing the energy demand and resource consumption and by generating solar energy on roof and facade.


A resource-conserving way of building and living should improve the lifestyles of the residents in the sense that the demand for goods is reduced by the construction method. Flexibility in floor plans is required: Areas should be used multiple times and be combined in a meaningful way: The upper three floors at Café Ada will offer a mix of apartments; additional common rooms and co-working spaces can be used by the residents of the whole Mirke district. The aim is to also reduce the building services to a minimum. Efficient technology will be installed to minimize energy and to reduce ancillary costs.

We are using the existing building structure to meet the growing need for living space without sealing additional areas.


A central technical concept is the reduction of energy and resource consumption. On a social level, concepts are implemented at minimal construction costs to avoid gentrification. This increase in cost efficiency is achieved through coordinated measures, from resource-saving use of materials to a highly efficient building envelope and gridcompatible operation.

Consistency and resilience.

The compact building is limited by an energy-efficient, energy-generating and highly thermally insulating building envelope. Efficient and low-maintenance technology will be used. The high-quality new addition will enhance the existing building and enable it to be renovated while retaining its previous use.

Sketch of the building design in the urban concept.


This refers to an innovative construction using regional wood. It has separable and reusable component structures, a high degree of prefabrication for a healthy life, free of pollutants. Energy losses are minimized by achieving the passive house standard, the use of heat recovery on several levels and the implementation of an electrical DC network. The energy is primarily generated from renewable energy sources on the roof and facade, and combined storage systems are to enable a high degree of self-sufficiency.