When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

Already a subscriber? Log in .

You've reached your limit of one free article.

Get unlimited access to Worldcrunch

You can cancel anytime .


Exclusive International news coverage

Ad-free experience NEW

Weekly digital Magazine NEW

9 daily & weekly Newsletters

Access to Worldcrunch archives

Free trial

30-days free access, then $2.90
per month.

Annual Access BEST VALUE

$19.90 per year, save $14.90 compared to monthly billing.save $14.90.

Subscribe to Worldcrunch

New Green Housing Developments In Switzerland: Car Owners Need Not Apply

Politicians in Zurich are debating whether rental agreements can forbid tenants to own a car. But in Bern, the Swiss capital, some 80 people have already signed such contracts.

Public transportation in Zurich (andynash)
Public transportation in Zurich (andynash)


ZURICHMany landlords make a point of keeping their properties pet, or maybe smoke-free. But in Switzerland, some new apartment blocks demand that tenants also be car-free.

The issue is currently a subject of debate among politicians in Zurich, where many poeple vigorously oppose the idea. Tages-Anzeiger readers have been battling it out online with hundreds of comments. In the meantime, however, construction has already begun in and around the city on several car-free housing developments where residents will voluntarily -- or not entirely voluntarily -- get along without the comforts of a car.

In the Swiss capital of Bern, a development finished a year ago in the Bümpliz district has 80 tenants, all of whom signed rental contracts agreeing not to keep "individual motorized means of transportation" where they live.

Resident Katharina Gallizzi told a German TV interviewer that she wasn't "giving up" anything. On the contrary: "Not having a car represents a very high standard of living," she said. Commuting on public transportation gives her time to read. Plus she doesn't have the stress of getting caught in traffic jams. For Gallizzi, the environmental implications are also important: "Doing something together for the environment brings people together; it's a nice experience."

One of the developers, Günther Ketterer, said he didn't see himself as anti-car and that if somebody needed to drive for some reason or another they could join a mobility scheme.

In Zurich hundreds of tenants will be moving into car-free developments in the next few years. A 250-unit facility called the Kalkbreite development, for example, is already under construction and is set to open in the spring of 2014.

A second Zurich development scheduled for completion in 2016, with 94 apartments, is in the planning stages and may well be built without parking space. In Leutschenbach, also in Zurich, another development of 450 apartments is going up with reduced parking possibilities – only 106 spaces will be built. In another development, local authorities actually opposed the developers' plans for 131 parking spaces, and authorized only 66.

Read the full story in German by Simon Eppenberger

Photo – andynash

*Newsbites are digest items, not direct translations

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

FOCUS: Russia-Ukraine War

70 Kilometers To Crimea: The Breakthrough That Could Shift The War In Ukraine

International support for Kyiv is waning and calls for negotiations are growing louder. But Ukraine has now managed to establish a bridgehead on the other side of the Dnipro River. From there, its troops could advance to Crimea — and turn the tide of the war.

A close-up side profile of a soldier with a river in the background and smoke rising above the tree line on the far bank

A photo posted on President Zelensky's X profile after Ukrainian troops reportedly established a bridgehead on the opposite side of the Dnipro River.

Alfred Hackensberger


Lots of water, a few boats and soldiers. That's all you can see in the three photos that Volodymyr Zelensky published on the X (Twitter) platform last weekend.

Keep reading...Show less

The latest