Schloss Tempelhof

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Schloss Tempelhof is located in rural hills near Schwäbisch Hall, between Stuttgart and Nuremberg. It consists of a 4-hectare plot with numerous buildings and 27 hectares of agricultural land, providing space for community living as well as diverse opportunities for commercial businesses and creative projects to meet the vision of a sustainable lifestyle for 150-200 inhabitants. In 2019, 80 adults and 30 children lived permanently in Schloss Tempelhof.


Schloss Tempelhof community was founded by entrepreneurs and activists from civil society movements around solidarity economy and health in Munich in 2007. [1]

In 2010, After several years of community building, a core group of 20 members bought an abandoned village in a rural area in South Germany. In five years, the community has grown to 140 inhabitants.

From May to October 2010 in collaboration with the local rural council and the district authorities, they developed a clarification statute for the village plus a supplementary statute, creating an additional zoning plan for mixed use for the main area to include housing and working facilities. This enables them to recreate a colourful and mixed village like in the old days.

Before the acquisition of the area was finalised, they invited the local population to an event in which they communicated the vision and values of their project and responded to questions and concerns. The founders sought dialogue with the mayor, who is until today a crucial supporter of Schloss Tempelhof.

Membership and community structure

New inhabitants first need to become cooperative members and deposit 32.000€, while families have to pay a lower amount per person. Furthermore, residents need to pay rent for their flat and a usage fee for community facilities, communal meals, etc. All inhabitants additionally need to render four hours per week a community task, such as cleaning, maintaining the garden or administrating the library. [2]

The land and real estate are owned by a residential based foundation and a cooperative. The communal infrastructure includes a canteen, car sharing, a village school and community gardening with 60% self-sufficiency.

Schloss Tempelhof employs about half of its members in part-time positions on the basis of need-based salaries, it carries on a seminar centre, plus members are running several businesses, a free school and experimental, innovative projects like the the ‘Earthship’.

Transformative Social Innovation website gives a comprehensive timeline with key events in the development of Schloss Tempelhof.


Several enterprises and institutions are associated with Schloss Tempelhof:

  • agricultural enterprise
  • seminar house
  • café
  • guest house
  • IT company
  • hairdresser
  • the “School for Free Development”

The school and the forest kindergarten are based on radically alternative pedagogical concepts.

Tempelhof also has a large community kitchen, in which professional cooks prepare breakfast, lunch and dinner for the community with vegetables from the agricultural enterprise.

There are several commercial kitchens on the premises, garages and large commercial spaces, a multipurpose room with a stage, well-appointed flats and plenty of green countryside. The cultivation of our land aims to ensure optimal organic farming to feed our community.

They also wish to improve the condition of the land according to established principles of soil health and to recycle and maintain natural cycles. The community has been working with Keyline cultivation pattern [3]