In summer 2012 we realised an international project in Albania: >>> BED&BUNKER <<< Albania is touristically barely tapped. But the varied landscape, the relaxed people and the nice weather are turning it into a worth seeing destination for individualtourists who like travelling off the beaten track. Bunkers in Albania grew at the time of communism not only like mushrooms - they are also looking like that. Until now they still shape the landscape from the mountains to the sea and also are "occupying" attractive viewpoints. Commonly bunkers are associated with war, suffering and the destruction of living environment. The project-team strived to give this living environment back to Albania’s society. Therefore arised the idea to reverse the formerly negative intent of the concrete buildings by BED&BUNKER and leverage the underdeveloped touristically economy by reconverting the bunkers to locally farmed backpackerhostels for hikers, bicycle- or motorcycle travelers.
The project is based upon the diploma thesis of Iva Shtrepi. Her concept was to create a path across the country from the mountains to the coast and to design the bunker as interstations with lodging. This idea has aroused great interest and therefore the degree programme of Interior design of the University of Applied Sciences, Mayence, Germany has taken the decision to plan and realise a "bunker-prototype" as a research project. Together with the International School of Architecture and Urban Development Policies, Tirana, Albania a cooperation and intercultural creative exchange has begun. The BED&BUNKER-Team is a mixed team of eleven albanian students Art and Design Studies and Architecture and ten german students of Interior design. In September 7th to 21th we wanted to realize the BED&BUNKER-prototype in Tale, Lezhë, Albania. The reconstruction of our bunker was nearly completed. For unclear reasons and circumstances we had to stop our work and leave Tale at the 20th of September. The Big Opening Party on the 21th of September didn't take place and the BED&BUNKER-bunker is currently neither available nor usable as originally planned. We regret this deeply and are still hoping that the bunker won't be destroyed but respected as it is and the public somehow "takes care". We will continue to report and inform the public about the progress the project is doing and are more than excited and thankful for all the feedback we receive. Our purpose is to reach many people from all over the world with our intercultural project. We would like to share our enthusiasm for the issue of conversion and for the country of Albania. So feel free to share and spread our project if you like it :)


International project cooperation by students of FH Mainz (University of Applied Sciences), Germany and Universiteti POLIS (International School of Architecture and Urban Development Policies), Tirana, Albania.