The Nazi anti-urban utopia: 'Generalplan Ost'

Unai Fernández de Betoño


Nazi Germany saw Eastern Europe as an opportunity to expand its territory, its living space. Poland would become the laboratory for an inhumane colonisation plan, the Generalplan Ost (“General Plan for the East”), which involved replacement of the non-Aryan population with Germanic farmers. The anti-urban management of that lobotomised territory was scientifically drafted by a group of architects, geographers, and agronomists working under the orders of Heinrich Himmler. The urban planning aspects of this utopian plan, based on central place theory, self-sufficiency, and neighbourhood units, were of great technical interest and influenced the creation of new communities within Franco’s regime. However, we cannot overlook the fact that, had the Nazi plan been completed, it would have resulted in the forced relocation of 31 million Europeans.


Nazi Germany; Generalplan Ost; land management; colonisation; urban planning

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