UfaFabrik is an urban ecovillage that began in 1979 when about 100 squatters occupied the former Universal Film Studios in the heart of West Berlin. Their Cold War message was “Peace through culture and ecology.” Their main mission was educational, but always with a splash of humor through street theatre and a home-grown circus.
Eventually, they gained title to the land and transformed the old film studio into a 160,000-square-foot state-of-the-art ecological demonstration site.
Today, UfaFabrik features state-of-the-art renewable energy and water conservation systems within a bustling hub of urban activity.
While only 35 adults live on site, another 150 are employed in the community’s organic café and bakery, social services, performance hall, children’s programs, martial arts studios and more.
The circus has morphed into a circus school that attracts local children and traveling troupes from around the world.
During my visit, UfaFabrik was preparing to host a circus school for Ethiopian orphans and I enjoyed a wonderful South Korean dance and percussion concert.
An estimated 200,000 visitors come through UfaFabrik every year.
Official website: http://ufafabrik.de/
Tour UfaFabrik via this navigable aerial photo http://ufafabrik.de/en/nav.php?pid=n168