What is the project about?
We believe that urban life is better with fewer cars. In the struggle to reduce automobile traffic, we focus on an issue that is often overlooked: Cars are parked on average for 23h per day, taking up on average 12m2 of mostly public space - and most of this space is privatised at no cost to car drivers in Berlin. Surprisingly, no one knows just how much of Berlin is occupied by parking - not even the city authorities. The data is simply not available in most areas. Data are available only where parking fees apply. While the Berlin state government aims for parking fees to apply on 75% of Berlins inner city roads (in the S-bahn Ring), the proportion currently stands at only 40% of these roads.
We believe that the necessary ecological transition of transportation requires making cars less attractive. We want to reduce the amount of public space allocated exclusively to cars. As a first step we want to invite everyone to participate in creating a high-quality map of urban space allocated to parking in berlin. Together we can create the empirical Basis to implement parking fees across the city and to develop alternative uses for space currently used to park cars. Ideas abound: Bicycle lanes, green spaces, cultural spaces, meeting spaces, urban gardening projects.
We want our counts to support individuals and organizations that share our vision - politicians, NGOs, and public authorities. We want to build momentum to redistribute space more equitably. Currently, we wander the streets counting parking spaces using pen and paper. In the future we want to count with a mobile app that will enable simple, decentralised and digital counting.
What are the next steps and goals?
In 2020 we mapped public parking in the Berlin Neighbourhoods of Akazienkiez and Friedenau. In both areas, local initiatives are working to introduce parking fees and reduce the space used for parking.
Furthermore, we are currently developing the concept of a mobile app to enable decentralised, digital mapping of parking. The next step will be a first prototype of this app. We then wish to raise funds to programme a robust version which we can make publicly available. Our media work engages with the press and the public using social media. We aim to raise awareness of the equitable distribution of space and invite people to join our citizen mapping events.
How can I participate?
We are an organization based on volunteers and welcome any helping hand. Everyone has something to contribute. You could take part in a public mapping event. You could help us organize such an event. You could help raise awareness of our project in the media or on twitter. You could help us analyze data of past mapping events. You could contribute conceptually or with your coding skills in the development of a mobile mapping app. Let us know.
Once a month we get together (Wednesdays at 7pm, currently online) for a plenary. Our work is structured in working groups that have their own schedules. Get in touch via email or send us a message on twitter for more information.
Foto: CityLAB BerlinXTransform
Greifswalder Str. 4, 10405 Berlin