May 2, 2013 by laimikis
In April 2013 Lithuanian team (Jekaterina Lavrinec & Julius Narkūnas) visited Berlin partners. Our aim was to explore the models of community activism in Berlin and the schemes of collaboration between municipality and urban activists. We are very grateful to Katja Niggemeier & Yvonne Kiefel for introducing us community gardening and community art initiatives in Kreuzberg and Tempelhof!
Airport of Tempelhof is a great example of how to avoid long-term situation of “under construction”, when urban territories are stay closed for citizens for many years. After the airport was closed this territory was passed to local activist groups and citizens, who used the territory for sport activities and community gardening. Thus instead of being closed, this place turned into point of attraction.
We also were lucky to visit some activities, which took place in neighbourhoods during Berlin art week. We also attended a flea-market (Mauerpark) in Mitte district. It was a great example of how street food culture and artisan activities can become a huge shift for revitalisation of the neighbourhood. Here, in Mauerpark we found community gardeners, who sell vegetables, fruits and juices and develop special branding for their products.
The other aim of the visit was to discuss the issues of youth participation in Alexanderplatz with our colleagues and participants of the project “Platzmanagement Alexanderplatz” and to share insights and provide consultations on informal communication tools, applicable for this square, seeking to turn it into a place for playful interaction and productive dialogue between various age groups. Many thanks to Tita Kaisari-Ernst for arranging this discussion! It was useful for us to explore a new case and to find, if communication tool for strengthening citizen participation would work in a new context.