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Planning workshops 2011/2012

Opening event on Nov.25, 2011, © Herwarth + Holz, Planung und Architektur

The further development of the KulturCampus Frankfurt was at the heart of the planning workshops, which were co-hosted by the City of Frankfurt and ABG Holding between November 2011 and 2012. All of the workshops (14 in total) were presented by Freischlad + Holz, Herwarth + Holz and AGL planning offices. In addition, a steering committee and a round table, which included citizens, politicians, the local consultative council, the Departments of Planning and Culture, ABG Frankfurt Holding and protagonists from cultural facilities, formed to guide and prepare the workshops.

The municipal authorities decided to initiate an extensive civil dialog in response to a wide array of suggestions made by the public, which translated into superb interest and commitment: On three weekends, some 350 participants overall joined the sessions to discuss key topics such as: Urban Development/ Monument Protection, Public Space/ Environmental Protection, Transport, Living and Culture and develop them creatively.

Each workshop kicked off with an update on the planning, which was supplemented with specialist information (workshop handbook) and a series of presentations on the matter at hand by experts, consultants and employees of the city administration.

Following plenary discussions the planning was presented and debated in detail in small moderated groups.
The official meetings were moreover complemented by working panels with a specific topic focus, which came together between the workshop weekends, and a number of interesting exchanges of citizens and representatives from administration and politics.

Once the key topics for the workshops were specified, participants began to formulate overarching guidelines for the Campus complex and debate a range of different urban scenarios.

The planners from Herwarth + Holz accompanied the workshops, which meant that the findings from each workshop could be continually implemented in the urban design concepts. This way, participants were able to see the immediate changes in the city fabric as a result of their suggestions. In the end, participants agreed on an urban planning concept that was favored by the majority.
The winning design was subsequently assessed for feasibility by way of illustration and model. The intention was to find a basic urban structure that would offer a wide spectrum of different uses and construction possibilities. 

Consensus-based plan

Opening event on Nov.25, 2011, © Herwarth + Holz, Planung und Architektur

The last workshop weekend was earmarked to formulate a plan that met with the agreement of all involved. An abstract representation of the results of the workshop, it forms the bedrock for the development of the quarter:
The site north of Bockenheimer Landstrasse has been earmarked for a large cultural complex that will include the University of Music and Performing Arts and the use of the theater at Bockenheimer Depot. From here along the old Jügelstrasse views are attracted by the entrance portal of the new, extended Senckenberg complex. Buildings on Jügelstrasse include, among others, the students house that will be preserved and extended into a cultural and social center. The idea is to establish additional cultural facilities along Jügelstrasse.

Essentially the wish is for a quarter that combines a wide range of uses. Nonetheless it is intended to erect the majority of new residential buildings in the quieter western section of the zone, while commercial areas have been earmarked along Senckenberganlage.

The erstwhile defense wall will be emulated in the form of a green avenue that opens out into parks in several places along the way to provide space for plants and recreational activities. These parks will be rounded out with several new pedestrian areas that will in due course be transformed into plazas and venues for cultural activities.

The topic of traffic was debated at length. Requests were expressed to curb the number of cars in the quarter and reduce Bockenheimer Landstrasse by one lane. On the other hand, it is important that the new offerings can be accessed and that existing traffic will flow smoothly.
Another topic of intense debate was the environmental and climatic impact of the planning. The idea of building an ecologically sound model district are being pursued further.
Moreover, requests for affordable residential space and living in residential communities were discussed, as was the preservation and conversion of existing buildings listed as cultural heritage.

Structural plan and legal zoning plan

Planungswerkstatt, © Herwarth + Holz, Planung und Architektur

After conclusion of the planning workshops the emphasis was on assessing whether the results could be realized. The documented results were forwarded to the policymakers. The City Planning Office for its part compiled a structural plan in summer 2012: as an interim step along the path to the legal site plan, here the wishes expressed in the consensus plan were transferred into regulations under planning law. The structural plan along with explanatory notes was presented to the Frankfurt City Council in report form and then presented to the general public in November 2012.
On the basis of the structural plan, in 2013 a proposal for the legal zoning plan was prepared.

This defines the type and scale of built usages, the real estate on which buildings can be constructed, public and private open spaces as well as traffic zones. Moreover, it provides details on trees to be preserved and planting, relationships between paths and car park spaces. An extensive explanation of the legal zoning plan is given along with an environmental impact study to outline the individual planning decisions involved.

The legal zoning plan proposal was made public in spring 2014. After weighing up all the statements received and concluding a supplementary Urban Planning Contract, the proposal was submitted to the relevant political bodies in the winter of 2015-6 for them to pass the resolutions required.

The www.kulturcampusfrankfurt.de website offers you comprehensive information on the progress and results of the planning workshops.