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Alternative housing: Are there any squats left in Berlin?

Three alternative housing projects — as legalised squats are known — are under threat. Now, the houses are banding together.

View of Köpi from other side of the street. Three cars park in front of it, the gate is adorned with banners. It is one of the most well-known squats in Berlin.
The famous squat ‘Köpi’ is awaiting yet another sale (Photo: GCM).

While it may not seem like it, there are no real permanent or even semi-permanent squats left in Berlin. But there are a fair few ‘alternative housing projects’ that emerged from the city’s squatting scene, and a few that established themselves through other means. But, as we know, Berlin’s housing market is merciless, and now a number of these projects are threatened.

Among them the famous ‘Köpi’ on Köpenicker Straße. The ramshackle house is one of the most well-known legalised squats in Berlin, and serves as a concert venue and cultural centre. Over the past three decades it has been sold several times, and currently there are talks of another sale. Neukölln’s housing project and bar Syndikat and the ‘anarcha-queer-feminist’ Liebig34 on Friedrichshain’s Rigaer Straße are awaiting eviction. As a consequence, 90 houses and groups have now banded together under the moniker ‘Kein Haus weniger’ (‘No house less’). They’ve decided to fight against the demise of alternative housing projects. Worth a try at least.

The inhabitants of ‘Köpi’ are banding together with other alternative housing projects (Photo: GCM).

Translated by Aida Baghernejad


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