Humboldt Volcano @ Garten + Landschaft

How is Berlin becoming a socially just smart city?

The Make City Festival discussed ideas like the Humboldt Volcano at the Humboldt Forum designed by Hybrid Space Lab.

Publication, Susanne Isabel Yacoub @ Garten + Landschaft, Germany, 15 August 2018

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Did “Make City” become tame? In 2015, Francesca Ferguson‘s Berlin Festival for Architecture and Anders-making with antitheses and alternatives, including many participatory projects, so thoroughly swept through established urban planning that everyone wanted to join the second edition this year, including planners, creative professionals, representatives of civil society, but also the Berlin Building Senator and the city development authority.

Under the motto “Berlin Remixing”, the event offered 280 events over a period of 18 days in June, and the 100 founding partners of the festival, including the BDLA, it succeeded in bringing together those who normally do not network with each other. To achieve this, Francesca Ferguson demands: “More freedom at all levels, more circular management of cities, stopping land speculation, gray and green infrastructures merging into new landscapes.”

And: The Humboldt Palace should become a volcano. “Does such a thing work better in Berlin than in other cities?” Building Senator Katrin Lompscher expressly looks for advice from “actors who make the city themselves”. Certainly, Berlin is still standing for that, despite the disastrous consequences of gentrification. This is encouragingly reflected in the new buildings around the former flower wholesale market at the Jewish Museum. By means of a conceptual process, the Kreuzbergers conquered their district back. Assemblies venture into commercial buildings for the first time, and in the much-acclaimed Metropole House, the ground floor becomes an extended public space for neighbors instead of profitability.

This time, perspectives on nature versus the city and the public space were more in focus. In this context, festival curator Martin Rein-Cano argued that landscape architects should censor less themselves in order to play out their visions or, in his own words: more strongly connect the functional “must haves” with the must loves.

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