THE FUTURE OF THE WIESENBURG IS TAKING SHAPE

With the founding of our cooperative ‘Die Wiesenburg Berlin eG’, we have set a milestone for the safeguarding of art, culture, crafts, education and social connectivity at the Wiesenburg as well as for the future management in self-administration.

Die Wiesenburg Berlin eG i.G.

+ Transition

In 2014, the Wiesenburg, a property in need of renovation, was transferred from the city of Berlin to the municipal housing company degewo. The early days of the new administration were marked by mutual mistrust and confrontational disputes about the future of the Wiesenburg and the retention of the current users. The conflicts have been overcome in recent years, so that we are now on an equal footing with degewo in cooperative negotiations about the further development of the site.

THE PROPRIETY IS TO BE SECURED AND RENEWED AS A SUPRA-REGIONAL PLACE OF ENCOUNTER AND CULTURAL EXCHANGE IN THE SENSE OF AN URBAN DEVELOPMENT ORIENTED TOWARDS THE COMMON GOOD.

+ Participation process #1

In a participatory process in 2016, the owner together with representatives from the neighborhood, the administration and our association developed a concept for the further development of this historic location with a combination of old buildings and new construction. In these negotiations, we secured the right of continuance for the resident businesses as well as for those working in the arts and culture.

+ Participation process #2

The objective of the second participatory workshop process in 2017 was to develop an urban planning and architectural concept for the structural development of the site with a focus on the new buildings being constructed in the north-east. Degewo completed the construction of 102 rental flats and 490 sm of commercial space, which became fully occupied in summer 2021. We campaigned for the new artists’ studio flats to be offered through the office of the Kulturwerk of the bbk berlin.

+ Funding

The results of both processes led to the application for funding by the Senate Department for Urban Development and Housing from the federal program project ‘National Projects of Urban Development’ for the redevelopment of the old building stock of the Wiesenburg. In 2019, the project ‘Revitalization of the Wiesenburg area’ started to be implemented for 2025/26. With additional investments by degewo, funding is available for the restoration of damaged areas, the repair measures of the commercial spaces and the reconstruction of the former collection hall and water tower.

+ Participation process #3 – Utilization concept

In a cooperative participation process, we worked with the owner, neighborhood representatives and the administration in 2020 to develop a utilization concept as the basis for the redevelopment, restoration and further development of the Wiesenburg. At the start of the process, we were able to contribute basic standards and impulses for the further development of the site and future uses by submitting our own commercial and creative concept. Taking into account the historical significance of the site, existing buildings are to be preserved and new areas of potential are to be developed. The diversity of uses is to be preserved and strengthened.

Utilization Concept Brochure | May 2021

AT EYE LEVEL

Working together to further develop the revitalization of the Wiesenburg area in Berlin-Gesundbrunnen

THE APPROVED UTILIZATION CONCEPT IS THE BASIS FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE WIESENBURG AND, WITH THE FORMULATION OF THE USES, FORMS THE FRAMEWORK FOR THE CULTURAL LOCATION. BASED ON THIS, A REDEVELOPMENT CONCEPT WILL BE CREATED BY COMPARING THE CONTENTS OF THE UTILIZATION CONCEPT WITH THE STRUCTURAL-SPATIAL CONSIDERATIONS.

+ Funding of the Cooperative

Parallel to the participation process for the utilization concept, we are developing a solidarity-based rental concept for socially acceptable rents together with degewo as part of a redevelopment partnership, as well as an administrative and organizational form that will secure our goals in the long term after redevelopment.

We set out to have a say in the cultural and social life of the Wiesenburg, to assert the interests of the users and to secure open spaces for art, culture, crafts, education and social connectivity. In the participation process, we were able to uphold our requirements for a redevelopment that preserves the special charm of the site as far as possible, a cautious opening of the site, and the protection of the current users as well as the co-determination of future uses.

In order to ensure that the rents remain affordable after redevelopment and that the management of the area is once again in the hands of the “Wiesenburgers”, we founded the cooperative ‘Die Wiesenburg Berlin eG’. We are currently negotiating with degewo and are confident that we will be able to conclude a long-term contract for the self-managed use of the site at fair conditions.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CJm59ebJ8sU&t=88s

+ Status Quo

Creative open spaces like those on the Wiesenburg are increasingly being lost in the center of the city. Long-term usage contracts such as heritable or non-heritable lease agreements can ensure the protection of spaces for art, culture, crafts and social activities for many generations. Particularly when properties are owned or influenced by the public sector and are subsidized by public funds, it must be ensured that they are not exposed to changing political interests, that in the long term they are not subject to the increasing pressure of exploitation which weighs on inner-city spaces, and that they are not challenged but remain available for artistic, cultural, craft and social uses at adequate conditions for an unlimited period of time.

The association ‘Die Wiesenburg e.V.‘ and the cooperative ‘Die Wiesenburg Berlin eG‘ are taking on the task of countering the changing times and the acceleration of life with their own pace and their own will to shape, to preserve the space of the Wiesenburg in the middle of the city for future generations, and to help determine the form and function of the place. We see the place as paradigmatic for a Berlin in which we want to live, work and invite the world.

Open, creative, in solidarity and resilient.

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