leerstandsmelder.de, a website used to map vacant buildings in German cities, has gained a great deal of local press, and now counts Hamburg, Berlin, Bremen, Kaiserlauten and Frankfurt as mapped. The site continues to build out its inventory of vacant buildings with the goal of seeing these unused assets put to use. The site is built on an open platform, and strives to bring transparency into the process so that there is more open dialogue about unused space. In addition to photos, there is the aim to add detail about the history and ownership of each building.
This is an interesting application of crowd-sourced mapping that feeds into our fascination with blighted and decompossing urban environments. In fact, the term ruin porn to explain a fetish for urban decay has been coined and is catching on. It would be interesting to see this same approach applied to cities in the American rustbelt, where I grew up, displayed in the same manner. The hope is that new uses could be found for existing infrastructure.
Via Synchronicity blog.