Friedrichstraße Berlin

Photo: visitberlin/Wolfgang Scholvien

“Sustainable Inner Cities and City Centres”: Successful Berlin Projects

Four Berlin projects are being funded as part of the Sustainable Inner Cities and City Centres (Zukunftsfähige Innenstädte und Zentre) federal programme. At the end of November, the Federal Institute for Research on Building, Urban Affairs and Spatial Development (BBSR) announced which municipalities will receive funding on behalf of the Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community (BMI). 

In the summer of 2021, the federal programme was assigned a funding amount that had been increased by a factor of ten. With a total of € 250 million – instead of the original € 25 million – the programme aims to help 238 projects in cities and municipalities throughout Germany sustainably develop their inner cities and town centres and master structural change. 

The coronavirus pandemic in particular has led to drastic changes in inner cities over the past months, confronting those responsible with significant problems, among them vacant commercial space due to businesses closing down; new requirements for urban space with regard to resilience and quality of residence; restrictions in commercial areas; and a decline in visitors. Despite these negative aspects, the crisis has given cities and municipalities the opportunity to develop new perspectives to increase sustainability and test new solutions in their inner cities, town and city centres.

There is great need for action, as the tremendous number of applications received in response to the call for projects has shown. At the same time, the submitted project proposals document that there are a number of great approaches and ideas on how to handle changing requirements in the aforementioned fields and in various contexts. 

Four Berlin projects have been selected as part of the federal programme and will receive funding means amounting to a total of around € 5.9 million; measures must be implemented by 2025 at the latest.
 

  • Marzahn-Hellersdorf with the Zukunft-Helle-Mitte project (link available in German only): Further development of a district centre in Marzahn-Hellersdorf as part of a joint project between private and public institutions.
    Planned measures: include establishing centre management; the interim use of vacant space; and construction and investment measures.
     

  • Berlin-Mitte with the Pop-up Mitte project: Strengthen Berlin’s city centre (Mitte district) and make it more attractive through the interim use of retail space as well as through art and interventions in the public space.
    Planned measures:  include strengthening the city centre and increasing its appeal; increasing visitor frequency; the interim use of vacant space; as well as artistic and cultural events in the public space.
     

  • Tempelhof-Schöneberg with the Zukunfts-t-Raum project: Integrated action strategies and approaches for a sustainable district centre located at Bundesallee/Rheinstrasse.
    Planned measures: include an action strategy to transform this centre; participation processes; and feasibility studies (subsequent use of Friedenau town hall and mobility hub).
     

  • Treptow-Köpenick with the StadtteilHUB project (link available in German only): Economic urban development action strategy with a pilot project for sustainable delivery logistics using micro-hubs and sharing components on Adlershof and Dörpfeldstrasse.

    Planned measures: include a pilot project to provide a solution for delivery logistics that meet the location’s specific needs; sustainable delivery logistics; and a sharing component that will be developed in a participative process.


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