Today, the Kreuzstraßenviertel is located in the eastern part of Leipzig’s city centre. It is named after the Kreuzstraße, the northern front of the prefabricated buildings (Plattenbau) in the district, which we can see here. Taken in December 2020, we can see the sometimes very eye-catching Christmas decorations in the balconies of the prefabricated buildings.
Today’s Kreuzstraße Quarter only came into being in the early 1980s as a prefabricated housing district in the GDR. About 20 five-storey blocks of flats were built with over 1000 flats, green courtyards and playgrounds for the residents. From 2008 onwards, the entire district was renovated to make it more energy-efficient.
From cabbage garden to cake garden to prefabricated housing
Originally, the Kohlgärten (cabbage gardens), which supplied Leipzig with vegetables, were located here in the area of the village of Reudnitz (which is still referred to today by Kohlgartenstraße). From the middle of the 18th century, a catering business developed here into the (Grosse) Kuchengarten (Cake Garden), which was eventually followed by the Kleine Kuchengarten. This resulted in a coffee garden with gardens known beyond Leipzig, which the young Goethe also visited. In the late 19th century, the area was subdivided and a residential area of the Wilhelminian period with isolated factories developed. Only after the destruction of the Second World War and due to the desolate condition of the remaining buildings was the area demolished at the end of the 1970s and rebuilt with WBS 70 prefabricated slab blocks from 1981-85. On the left edge of the picture at the car park of a supermarket once stood the home and death place of the writer and women’s rights activist Louise Otto-Peters (1819-1895), who is commemorated today by a memorial stone.