Please see also Pseudochurches are best
From October 27 to 30, a group of activists occupied an empty building at Stauffenbergstraße 10 in Tübingen, Germany. That house has an interesting history. It was built by a christian fraternity in 1902. In 1936 the fraternity self-dissolved due to nazi pressure – it had been one of the few not falling into step with nazism. The house, being threatened by expropriation, had to be sold to a religious organisation ("Evangelische Diakonieschwesternschaft Herrenberg-Korntal") not in conflict with the nazi authorities. This organisation is the house's owner to the very day. After the war it served different purposes; most recently it had been a psychiatric day hospital for the elderly. Negotiations with the city of Tübingen to make it available for low income tenants quickly broke down, and the house was left empty by its proprietors.
At the time being, Tübingen is experiencing a housing crisis. Rents are going through the roof, but in a city of 87000 (a third of them being students at the local university) at least 150 houses, or an estimated 400 apartments, are uninhabited. This situation is being exacerbated by the fact that many residential buildings in Tübingen have been alienated as university facilities. They're being used as dean's offices, smaller research institutes and the like. This is nothing new to Tübingen, in fact it bears the question why the city's government has been failing to find a long term solution for many decades now. When I started studying in Tübingen (1985) the situation was roughly the same as today. Around 1989 it grew into a scandal. Rents were at an utterly outrageous level by then, and quite some squattings took place that year.
The occupation of Stauffenbergstraße 10 seems to have reached its objectives. Negotiations about the building's use have been restarted, and the future will tell where they lead to. Press coverage was extensive. Surprisingly, the papers were mostly in favor of the squatters; at least they didn't demonise them like their counterparts from earlier decades. Nonetheless the activists say this was just the beginning. Their twitter hashtag during the occupation's last day was: 1von150 (1 of 150).
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