From the Suburban to the Urban

architect Bogdan Reichenberg
project Housing Block of Nonprofit Flats, Maribor, Slovenia
written by Uroš Lobnik


The City’s Architectural Bazaar


There is a block with twenty-four non-profit flats behind the main approach road that leads through the south-eastern, peripheral part of Maribor – the Tezno suburb. The primary urban concept of Maribor’s districts follows Miljutin’s principle of a band-structured city; the post-war period was marked by the complex building of housing, the filling in of areas for trade and production, the expansion of individual housing on the approach routes to the city and, during the past twenty years, by intensified construction and a period of random and incomplete realisations. The times when the quality of building realisations along the Ptuj road was left, unavoidably, to politicians and architects and when it was dependent on social capital are a thing of the past. The only “grand” reminder of socio-realistic urban planning is a rather large area of undeveloped building sites. Consequently, the area around the Ptuj road became the city’s architectural bazaar in the 1990s. “Monstrosities” were built that had nothing in common with architecture, although there were also houses that could be termed as nationally significant architecture.