Ebertplatz stair

Ebertplatz 0? - Cologne University of Technology Temporary interventions on Ebertplatz

Project description: Ebertplatz - Temporary intervention: open stair and seating platforms 


Ebertplatz, located to the north of Cologne's city center, has been the subject of discussion for years: on the one hand, debates about maintenance backlogs, drug dealing and social problems - on the other hand, Ebertplatz has established itself in recent years as a place for the creative scene with galleries, numerous events and as a meeting place for the adjacent neighborhoods. The interim use of Ebertplatz has played a significant role in this positive development. For the further development of the square, the Cologne City Council decided on a two-stage competition with planning phase 0 or pre-qualification and the continuation of interim use in conjunction with the preparation of the long-term design.

 "The project (interim use) contributes to making the square more attractive again, creating opportunities for co-designing the public space and testing ideas for use under real conditions for the planning process that will begin simultaneously." (Press release: City of Cologne - The Mayor’s Office for Press and Public Relations, 29.03.2022) 

This project aims to contribute to this with two temporary interventions that work together in the project: 

Ebertplatz stair - 

The flight of steps connects Ebertplatz more closely to the Eigelstein area and make it accessible without having to use an underpass. The flight of steps creates more places to spend time and hold events on Ebertplatz. As a new place of communication, it enlivens the passage and the square and simplifies access. For residents, passers-by, interested parties and cultural workers, it is intended to become a place where people can meet, linger and where events can take place.

The planning and realization was carried out in close cooperation with Brunnen e.V., the independent art spaces, the Alte Feuerwache, the Bürgerverein Kölner Eigelstein e.V., other interim users, the Cultural Office, the City Planning Office, Baukultur NRW and other participating offices of the City of Cologne. Public presentations and exhibitions of interim results - as well as the testing of temporary interventions - will also continue to involve the wider public in the project. In this way, the project serves on the one hand to test concrete design options for the Gallery-passage in its function as a place for art and culture - with the strengthening of accessibility, places to stay and sit and visibility in the urban space - and also as an impulse for the co-design of the participatory process in the beginning planning process / pre-qualification for the long-term design of Ebertplatz. 

This project has been preceded by preparations since 2021: in the first phase of the project in winter-semester 2021/22, the basics were initially compiled and analyzed and initial design approaches were developed, presented and discussed in public. The feedback and suggestions were taken on board in the second phase in spring of 2022 and possible approaches were discussed and further developed in a "World Café" charette with representatives from the city planning office, the cultural office, the public order office, the police, the independent art spaces and the citizens' association, among others. Building on this, designs for temporary interventions were developed in a workshop held by students from TH Köln and RWTH Aachen in June of 2022. 

In the third project phase in the fall-semester of 2022, the temporary interventions on Ebertplatz were further detailed, discussed with local stakeholders and preparations were made for their implementation. The realization of the temporary interventions thus represents a long-prepared process that serves the temporary qualification of the Ebertplatzpassage and is intended to contribute to public participation in the preparation of the further design of Ebertplatz.

The fourth project phase was the application for building permits, the preparation of construction drawings, coordination with local carpenters and the intensive 6-week construction phase. The interventions were built by a team of students with support by a local group of construction workers who specialize in public urban projects. The stairs and seating-benches were given to the public during the grand opening on 13.09.2023. 


The designers:

Students of the TH Köln, supported by Susanne Kohte, Christopher Schroeer-Heiermann and Yasemin Utku

Cologne University of Applied Sciences 

Faculty of Architecture 

Betzdorfer Street 2 

50679 Cologne


TH Köln /Cologne University of Applied Sciences


Jessica Abrantes, Fela Bancken, Lilian Bander, Sarah Bauer, Judith Baumeister, Frederike Bohlen, Theresa Brune, Jo Carmine Chirchietti, André Michael Classen, Rebecca Diebold, Judith Escher, Ivan Falkenstern, Moritz Ferfer, Chrisa Fitila, Ramona Franz, Johannes Gerling, Linda Glesius, Clara Grothkopp, Rahma Güntepe, Neele Amei Hasselbring, Ammar Hesam-Zadeh, Gentonis Istrefaj, Rita Jettou, Antonia Jordan, Simay Kasap, Kim Kelly Kellershohn, Alma Cosima, Kern Meryem, Tugba Kilic, Marie Kleinschmidt, Julia Katharina Kratz, Theresa Lefken, Larissa Liebald, Christina Meier, Alaleh Ghiasi Moghaddam, Jannik Neufeld, Kim Tram Nguyen, Magdalena Nickel, Aila Nuutinen, Olivia Oelsen, Nora Okko, Monireh Pilehvar, Steffen Tobias Prust, Delfina Rein, Till Frederik Reuter, Maureen Rhode, Fabio Scharfen, Konrad Schmidt, Lisa Schmitz, Tristan Scholz, Luis Schönthal, Jessy Shehu, Ilgin Kilic, Taner Aleyna Tay, Ramona Tokgözoglu, Milos Topic, Ayse Tunc, Clemens Urban, Jonas Winkels, Denise Zorn
Susanne Kohte, Chris Schroeer-Heiermann
Collaborating Organisations
Kulturamt der Stadt Köln, Baukultur Nordrhein-Westfalen, Bürgerverein Kölner Eigelstein e.V., RheinEnergieStiftung Kultur
Project Implementation
Project Implementation
Werkstatt Global
Project Implementation
Labor für exprimentelles Bauen der TH Köln
Kulturamt der Stadt Köln, Baukultur Nordrhein-Westfalen, Bürgerverein Kölner Eigelstein e.V., RheinEnergieStiftung Kultur
Financial support, Construction organisation, consultant
Zimmerei Sascha Nitsche

Academic Discipline(s)
Academic Level(s)
Academic Facts

Project Start
Wintersemester 2021
Length of Planning/ Design Phase
3 Years
Length of Construction Phase
6 weeks in August-September 2023
Project Context
Community / Culture | Traffic Infrastructure
Other Focus
Urban Planning, Social
Construction Methods/Techniques