PHVision – Development Patrick-Henry-Village

Location: Kirchheim
Client: City of Heidelberg
Masterplan: KCAP, Zurich/Rotterdam
Scenarios: MVRDV, Rotterdam | Carlo Ratti Associati, Turin/New York | ASTOC, Cologne | Ramboll Liveable Cities Lab, Boston/Überlingen and University of Brighton

»The city of tomorrow will prove itself through the quality of urban development. PHVision offers a robust framework and will be able to react flexibly to changing user interests. There is room for mixing all areas of life and working environments. Synergistic effects between science, business and housing are a convincing leitmotif.«
IBA advisory board

For the former Patrick Henry Village (PHV), IBA Heidelberg is providing an ambitious response to the urban develop- ment of the knowledge-based society. PHVision is intended to create an exemplary urban design to demonstrate that the »knowledge city of tomorrow« will be fit to provide the resources of life for years to come.

With an area of almost 100 hectares, the conversion area of the Patrick Henry Village is almost as large as Heidelberg’s old town. The remoteness of the PHV requires intelligently developed concepts that link the area with the region and combine living and working in a new manner. In a one-year process designed by the IBA, internationally operating urban planners designed four scenarios on the IBA themes in exchange with local experts and citizens: Sciences and business, networks and infrastructure, knowledge spaces and housing, as well as urban metabolism and landscape. KCAP Architects & Planners (NL/CH) have built upon the scenarios of the Offices MVRDV (NL), Carlo Ratti Associati (IT/US), ASTOC (DE), Ramboll Liveable Cities Lab (DE/US) and the University of Brighton (UK) to conceptualize the »PHVision« concept.

The result now forms the basis for in-depth studies, unconventional design approaches and regulatory innovations. Based on existing structures, a new quarter will be developed to accommodate multiple and hybrid spaces to live and work, fit for the 21st century.


IBA designed a one year multilayered process, in which international urban planning offices drew up utopic scenarios around the IBA themes. These scenarios were brought together to one coherent development vision for the area.
Process Overview


The goal is to work out a development vision together with Heidelberg urban society, PHV neighbors and globally renowned urban planning offices in terms of the “knowledge city of tomorrow” based on the different thematic scenarios. The development vision should promote the decision-making capabilities of the city and urban society for the future of this challenging area.


KCAP Architects&Planners drew up the development vision, merging aspects from the visionary scenarios of the urban planning offices MVRDV (NL), Carlo Ratti Associati (IT), ASTOC (GER), Ramboll Liveable Cities Lab (GER) und University of Brighton (UK).
Detailed Results

  • Key Data

    May 2016
    First public hearing

    June 2016
    Kick-Off Design-Thinking series

    September 2016
    Second public hearing

    December 2016
    Third public hearing

    March 2017
    Forth public hearing

    October 2017
    CANDIDATE Status PHVision as Augmented Reality

    December 2017
    PHVision becomes official planning guide

    July 2018
    10 Days Metropolink Festival in the officer’s mansions

    September 2018
    Start of the administration project group PHV