1. Wouldn't it be a bit odd to have a traction elevator for a 3-story residential building? I thought those were almost always hydraulic.

  2. The fact that it is one story higher than the building makes me think this is an elevator shaft. The top floor would be the machine room.

  3. Probably an elevator shaft to comply with accessibility laws. Generally, when forced to have them, property owners don’t make them look ‘pretty’.

  4. could you maybe ask your neighbours about it? they are probably going to be more helpful than random strangers on the internet....

  5. Unlikely, given the lack of windows. The presence of windows only at the top suggests that is the only usable space, and is likely to be for maintenance access to lift machinery.

  6. architectually, i agree. This is the most likely answer. Not an elevator shaft, but a stair well pre war (pre ww2)

  7. I was thinking maybe a fire escape stair. In Montreal, it’s not unusual for there to be a back stair that is housed in a little weather proof thingy off the back of the building in the alleyway. This could be a similar situation.

  8. Building code requires elevator shaft enclosures to be fire barriers. That combined with the extra space at the top for the mechanical components and the general size and shape of it makes it a fairly likely candidate for an elevator of some kind.

  9. Possibly stair well, as building codes are some what same. Im thinking its a stair well, from PRE ww2 germany, and the building was damaged and rebuilt but due to saftey, the stairwell remained?

  10. Given the odd skinny windows to the left of it and tiny bit of original roof near the top, I would believe it is a newer construction. Since there are no windows on the structure and it appears wider than deep I would think it is an elevator shaft for the next door building. Also the heavy conduit looks to be supplying power to the structure.

  11. I am 99% sure this is an elevator shaft. Definitely not for your part of the building as the difference in roofline suggests. Somewhat common in europe I know there is a lot of those in Prague on old buildings (a lot compared to other places, in general it is still relatively rare)

  12. Not much info about the house itself. Like how many floors or how large is the building. If you are above a subway it could also be ventilating the underground

  13. My title describes the thing It seems to be made out of the same material as the rest of the house. Could be it's some kind of Ventilation thing, but no vents are visible from my position.

  14. It is an elevator shaft which is left incomplete. The builder would not have the right clearances or approvals because of which it is left like this.

  15. Can you actually walk up to it and look around? Maybe go inside the building and look around where it is?

  16. Just saw a video on how a lot of cities hide infrastructure in windowless buildings, like Los Angeles has oil rigs all over covered up in buildings. Could be some sort of gas/water/electrical infrastructure in that structure

  17. Where I live, elevator shafts are built first, then the building around it. Could have been repurposed commercial site.

  18. OP, it's an elevator. You constantly saying there's not one in your house, but failing to mention this is not your house, is a bit weird.

  19. That shingled notch is not how things are built. It's an adaptation. It looks like there was additional structure over that first floor at one point. Perhaps a second floor fire or other damage led them to make-do with the remaining concrete structure of the building. it could be a staircase or former elevator shaft.

  20. Not sure if this is it but in the historic Eastern Market area of Detroit a lot of the old buildings had these or odd shapes where one corner was taller than the rest. During Prohibition they were built to contain the parts of an illegal distillery that need to be stacked for gravity feeding.

  21. Different house towards the camera previously, you can see how closed up the side of it (cf the shingles just below the satellite dish, that are obviously part of the tower). Might've been bombed in the war and destroyed.

  22. Maybe a housing for the air/water/electrical systems. Put them all in one place to allow for non intrusive repairs and keep them protected

  23. Looks a bit like infrastructure associated with venting from a large tunnel underneath. It would explain the lack of features, height, etc.

  24. Ok so I'm a bit late with my reply, but I doubt it's an elevator shaft. Now since you've mentioned you're living in Germany, I've seen similar buildings used for indoors popinjay, a type of archery. Depends on how high the building is of course.

  25. Possible elevator shaft. More likely a utilities chase. Your power, water and steam would run through it. The extra height would be for the service space at the top for the distribution system to the individual units. (Most utilities including power are ran underground in germany. All inside a concrete vault about that size if laid over on its side)

  26. As you are in Germany that is probably an old Flakturm or is a vent tower for a underground facility

  27. I tend to agree with people believing this is an elevator shaft, but it also could be a stairwell roof access enclosure. Do you know if the house next to you has a rooftop patio?

  28. It could be for drying fire hoses or for fire escape stairs. I do not want to violate the rule against being uncivil, but I'm having a hard time understanding if this is your home how are you could possibly not know what it is.

  29. Maybe Telco infrastructure, looks like there is a satellite dish on one side... Like it has kind of the vibe of a CO, but they usually are not tall and skinny like that.

  30. Another suggestion -- enclosure for a water storage tank. A slow water source can be pumped into the tank continuously, allowing for a lot of high-pressure water when it's needed. Like mornings when everybody is getting ready for work at the same time, or when the sprinklers go off for a fire.

  31. I imagine there is a water “tower” in there. Similar to how in large cities water is plumbed to the building from a tank on the roof. It has to be higher than the building for pressure (explaining the height). neighbors/residents prob complained about how ugly it was, & they built the building around it

  32. Could be they are mining / drilling oil and that is a ventilator / lift shaft. They disguise them sometimes.

  33. I'm thinking it's for pulling air out of the house to cool it. As heat rises up into the shaft, which is already hotter, it creates a nice pull of hot air out of the structure. Solved!

  34. Could be the top of an oil rig, those are actually super common in places like LA, look it up. The towers are often disguised as trees or large buildings.

  35. It looks like a Dovecote for racing Doves/pigeons. I live in Luxembourg and my neighbors has one similar attached to their house.

  36. Could be a hidden in plain site oil pumper. California has them all over. Like tons right in the city hidden just like this, although usually done as an actual house or apartment.

  37. Water tower? Maybe that’s why it is above the buildings, so it can provide water through gravity.

  38. It could be used for electrical access. It looks like there are wire pipes running into it and a satellite dish hooked on it as well

  39. It could be used for electrical access. It looks like there are wire pipes running into it and a satellite dish hooked on it as well

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