Senior Member
English (American)
Greetings! I heard the term Silostadt for the first time today--it was in a podcast where they were investigating crime in Russia. What does a native German speaker associate with Silostadt? Is there automatically some sort of connection with East Europe assumed? Are there any Silostädte in Germany?

Thanks in advance!
  • I do not know the word, not even from GDR.
    But I have the feeling I know a similar name. I cannot remember.

    Just from the words I would suppose a place with lots of silos. Stadt (town) is a metaphor then for lots of silos forming a kind of town structure.

    Do you have more context? Were is it? Was it about crime in agriculture?

    Is there automatically some sort of connection with East Europe assumed? - I do not have any.

    Are there any Silostädte in Germany? I do not know anyone.

    PS: My wife has a possible solution. It is a town of Scyscrapers where each looks similar to the other.
    A single house of these is called "Schnarchsilo" (sleeping Silo, resembling large farms with lots of small places for animals, for example chickens.).

    I will write more.
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    I have never heard or seen the word before. I know "Silo" as a tall building that is used for storage.

    So I guess "Silostadt" might be a city that is composed of skyscrapers? No idea. :confused: I also can't find definitions. Let's see what others say.

    (Cross-posted with Hutschi)
    see here:

    Hintergrund: Das Wohnungsbauprogramm der DDR

    1973 beschloss die SED-Führung deshalb das ehrgeizige Wohnungsbauprogramm: Der Bevölkerung wurde versprochen, bis 1990 die «Wohnungsfrage als soziales Problem» zu lösen. Es galt als «Kernstück der Sozialpolitik der SED». Rund drei Millionen Wohnungen sollten bis dahin gebaut oder modernisiert werden, wobei der Neubau von Plattenbauten eindeutig dominierte. Großsiedlungen - im Volksmund «Arbeiterschließfächern» und «Schnarchsilos» genannt - wie Berlin- Marzahn, Leipzig-Grünau oder Rostock-Lichtenhagen entstanden. Bereits in den 60er Jahren begonnene Satellitenstädte wie Halle-Neustadt wurden erweitert.

    Translation with DeepL, and revised
    In 1973, the SED leadership ... adopted the ambitious housing construction program: the population was promised to solve the "housing question as a social problem" by 1990. It was considered the "centerpiece of the SED's social policy. Around three million apartments were to be built or modernized by then, with the new construction of prefabricated houses clearly dominating. Large housing estates - popularly known as "workers' dormitories" and "snore silos" - such as Berlin- Marzahn, Leipzig-Grünau or Rostock-Lichtenhagen were built. Satellite towns that had already been started in the 1960s, such as Halle-Neustadt, were expanded.

    So it is a kind of new satelite cities with mostly similar houses and flats.

    I know the Russian movie "Die Neubauwohnung" (the flat in a new town) - one was in Moscow, one in Leningrad, the houses and flats were the same. A worker missed the correct flight and came into the wrong flat, it had even the same interieur and the same streetname but was in the wrong town. He was wondering why a woman was in his bed. Later he found that he was in the wrong town.
    You can find the word "Schlafsilo" and pictures. This was quite common. I just do not know "Silostadt". But Town of Schlafsilos makes sense for me.

    - in English you can compare it with the song "little boxes".
    Little Boxes - Wikipedia from Malvina Reynolds Source


    Little boxes on the hillside/Little boxes made of ticky-tacky/Little boxes on the hillside/Little boxes all the same
    There's a green one and a pink one/And a blue one and a yellow one/And they're all made out of ticky-tacky/And they all look just the same/

    The principle is the same, only the silos are higher.

    Please tell us, if it fits the context.
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    The principle is the same, only the silos are higher.

    Please tell us, if it fits the context.
    I think that's the right direction. I basically understood Speckgürtel in the moment. Later in the podcast it was explained that a lot of apartments popped up in Russia after the war (much like in Germany) because so many places had been destroyed and they needed places for people to live.
    Another observation that might lead to something: English associates silos with missiles as well. Missiles are stored in "missile silos." Not sure if this is used in German as well-->Raketensilo ???

    Because it's Russia, there's always the chance that missile silos might be in play, but it sounds from the earlier observations that this is probably not the case.
    Aus dem Kontext: Es gibt ganze Silostädte, die von (für mich so beschriebenen) ununterscheidbaren alten Frauen besiedelt werden ...

    = es gibt sogar relativ große Silostädte ...

    Es geht um den Mord an alten Frauen.

    "Silostädte" ist hier leicht pejorativ für die Ununterscheidbarkeit, Massenhaftigkeit der Wohnstätten, die auf Funktion beschränkt sind. Also wie "Schlafsilos".
    "Silostädte" ist hier eine Spontanschöpfung.
    Ärmlich, billig dahingezimmerte Plattenbauten, ... die wurde in Zehntausenden überall ... gebaut.

    4...5 Stockwerke hoch, vier Wohnungen auf jeder Etage. Nester und Rückzugsorte ...


    Englisch: (using DeepL)

    I think, "Silo cities" is a spontaneous word phrase creation here. The "little boxes" comparison fits quite well.

    There are whole silo cities, which are inhabited by (indistinguishable) old women ...

    = there are even relatively large silo cities ...

    It is about the murder of old women.

    "Silo cities" is slightly pejorative for the indistinguishability, massiveness of the dwellings, which are limited to function. So like "sleeping silos."

    Poor, cheap prefabricated buildings, ... which were built in tens of thousands everywhere ... built.

    4...5 floors high, four apartments on each floor. Nests and retreats ...
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    Merkwürdig, dass hier noch nie das Wohnsilo erwähnt wurde, ein Begriff, der ein sehr großes, unpersönliches Vielparteien-Wohnhaus beschreibt (gerne auch in Plattenbauweise), in dem die Mieter eingepfercht sind wie in einem Silo.

    Eine Silostadt ist für mich eine Stadt oder eher ein Stadtteil, wo viele Wohnsilos anzutreffen sind.

    It's strange that no one here has ever mentioned the Wohnsilo, a term that describes a very large, impersonal multi-party residential building (often in prefabricated concrete slab construction) in which the tenants are crammed in like in a silo.

    For me, a Silostadt is a city or rather a district where many residential silos are to be found.