- Posted January 3, 2012 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Mark your points of interest
World's Oldest Social Housing Project
Yes... but actually, it's 88 cents (Euro cents, that is)... which translates to around 1 USD. And yes, this is all the residents pay... PER YEAR!
Wolfgang Mozart's great grandfather, a bricklayer, was the most famous resident to benefit from living in the Fuggerei.
(this is a revised version of my last video I loaded)
I happened to discover the Fuggerei while I was visiting the city of Augsburg, and it astonished me! The apartments were a "gift" to the city's poorer residents, from the Fugger family. In 1521. The sheer magnitude of the Fugger family's wealth and generosity is amazing.
"Jakob Fugger the Rich," as he was so called by his contemporaries, had, relatively speaking, a scale of wealth that made him like the Bill Gates or Steve Jobs of his time. Actually, he was considered to be many the wealthiest man in the whole world. Remember, this was 500 years ago!
While he did live a grand life, building his share of personal castles, he also found it important to give back. He established the Fuggerei, a gated housing community consisting of 150 apartments, in his hometown of Augsburg so that hard working yet less fortunate craft families had the opportunity to overcome poverty.
The apartment community continues to be maintained to this day by a trust corporation set up by Fugger, with the intention that it would run into eternity...for the eternally minimal individual rent of 88 Euro cents per year. As well, once an Augsburger secures an apartment in the Fuggerei, the resident has that apartment for life.
There is one catch. In addition to the minimal rent, the residents must be faithful Roman Catholics, and they must agree to attend prayer 3 times a day when the bell tolls, to demonstrate their faith and to give thanks for the Fuggerei.