How a DIY Floating University in Berlin Could Be an Unorthodox Prototype for Design Education

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The temporary pirate shiplike school, spearheaded by local firm Raumlabor, provided a delightful hodgepodge of serious academia and public programming.

On the north side of Tempelhofer Feld, an airport-turned-park in southern Berlin, lays a large ditch. Surrounded by lots and bungalows and noticeable only to those in the know, this 19th century basin holds rainwater drained from the airport’s defunct runways before it is fed into Berlin’s canal network.

“We knew it was kind of a secret spot in the center of the city that nobody had on the map,” explains Benjamin Foerster-Baldenius of Raumlabor Architects. That is, until this summer…

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