Arrival City: Offenbach is nearly alright

Studio Arrival City is an MArch Design Studio at Sheffield School of Architecture. The project ran from November 2016 till June 2017.

“A great and final shift of global population is upon us. We will end the century as a wholly urban species.”Habitat III, Sanders, D

Seen by many in the West as a threat, this rural to urban migration will have profound implications on the lives and well-being of the migrants and the geopolitical landscape. To explore the effect that mass migration and urbanisation is having on our cities, our studio focused on the notion of the Arrival City. Operating as transitional spaces for those entering the city, Arrival Cities in the words of Doug Sanders (author of Arrival City),  are the places where the next great economic and cultural boom will be born. Arrival was the key theme of the 2016 German Pavilion at the Venice Biennial; Making Heimat – an Arrival Country. The exhibition identified Offenbach-am-Main as a prototype Arrival City. Historically seen as the poor neighbour to Frankfurt to its west, the messy urban blocks that form the fabric of Offenbach sit in stark contrast to the looming presence of the European Central Bank over the river. Full of life, ringed with shops and cafes below apartments housing a wide range of people, the urban blocks of Offenbach support a rich mix of urban life that have enabled an Arrival City to take hold. 

1 Habitat III (2016) & Sanders, D (2010)
2 UN-HABITAT State of the Worlds Cities 2008/2009