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The redesign of Frankenallee with underpass

Photo of the redesign of Frankenallee, photo: Projektsteuerung K. Esser, Frankfurt, © Stadtplanungsamt Stadt Frankfurt am Main

One of the key projects in the Gallus is the remodeling of the tree-lined green strip extending on the central reservation of Frankenallee. A major urban transport axis, Frankenallee links the northern section of Gallus from east to west. The potential offered by the open space on Frankenallee is considerable – the overall surface area has the size of a municipal park. For this reason, shortly after the district had been included in the scheme, citizens and local politicians alike were already focusing on how best to enhance Frankenallee. Following an initial expert planning study of the potential for greening the reservation, in 2005 an extensive participation process involving residents and other protagonists was launched, which spawned the following points of consensus:

As of 2005, further activities run by the citizens’ group were:

  • A late summer stroll along Frankenallee.
  •  “Clean Frankenallee” action day.
  • A workshop devoted to improving Frankenallee with clear wishes by citizens with regard to the redesign: improving the intersection with and ends of Schwalbacher Strasse and the design of paths, improving the vegetation, planting flowers, ensuring they are tended to, finding sponsors, installing lighting.
  • An evening stroll devoted to safety and lighting, with test lighting.

The results of these meetings were incorporated into the list of assignments when five landscape architecture companies were commissioned to produce initial draft proposals. The concept developed by Neu-Isenburg’s Ipach und Dreisbusch was selected for further detailing and included the following elements: remodeling and enlarging the ends to make crossing Frankenallee easier; upgrading and increasing the quality of the green reservation by means of a new, wider path; removing the thick, impenetrable hedgerow and planting flowers instead; installing new lighting to improve attractiveness and safety; creating a presentable plaza in front of Friedenskirche and a plaza in the east of Quäkerwiese.

Redesign of Frankenallee on the intersection at Schwalbacher Straße, photo: Ipach Landschaftsarchitekten, © Stadtplanungsamt Stadt Frankfurt am Main

The first stage of building work between Schwalbacher Strasse and Friedenskirche was completed between October 2007 and February 2008 and officially inaugurated with a “festival of light” in April 2008.

The subsequent remodeling of the intersections with Krifteler Strasse and Schwalbacher Strasse was performed between September 2009 and February 2010.

The completed first section was finally opened for use by the local residents in May 2010 an event marked by “re-enacting the historical Frankenallee cycle race”. Since 2010, preparations have been underway readying the second section in the east between Schwalbacher Strasse and Galluswarte for construction work, set to commence in early January 2017.

In April 2011, the form the second phase of building work would take was also discussed with interested residents and the adjacent Günderrode School as part of a social City Gallus planning workshop. Following the early completion of one stage in December 2013, the second stage of building work was realized in full between November 2015 and April 2017. This involved renewing the sidewalks from Kelkheimer Strasse to the railroad underpass and installing new lighting. From Kriegkstrasse to the underpass, the islands in the middle were remodeled in a similar fashion to that in the first stage of building work. Wider footpaths, new benches, and extensive greening visibly increased the attractiveness of the boulevard. In addition, two underground glass containers were erected to replace the previous rather unattractive ones. At the intersections tactile paving for the blind in the form of grooved and nub slabs was laid, and the curbs were lowered. 

The areas at the end of Flörsheimer Strasse, Kriegkstrasse, and Hufnagelstrasse were enlarged and fitted with different-color concrete elements. At the intersection with Hufnagelstrasse a large globe indicating the countries of origin of the pupils at Günderrode School was erected as a symbol of the many cultures living side by side in the Gallus district. 
The third section between Friedenskirche and Homburger Damm is planned for the coming years. 

The key Social City project “Underpass cut into the Embankment at Frankenallee/Homburger Damm” associated with the remodeling of Frankenallee
would not only enable a continuous “Cycle Route 10” to be established from Downtown to Höchst” for pedestrians and cyclists, but also link the center of Gallus district with the previously isolated residential districts in the northwest. However, the realization of this complex project in collaboration with Deutsche Bahn still requires extensive preparation.