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Radical Radial! – Re-Urbanisation of main streets.

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Article from the book: Bridging Urbanities.

Aljoscha Hofmann

Bridging Urbanities<br>&copy; LIT Verlag, Berlin.Abstract
This paper introduces “Radikal Radial!” (“Radical Radial!”), a joint-proposal by the initiative Think Berl!n, a group of young architects, planners and scientists from the TU Berlin, founded in 2009 by Aljoscha Hofmann, Cordelia Polinna, Jana Richter and Johanna Schlaack, Prof. Harald Bodenschatz (TU Berlin, Gruppe DASS) and the urban design consultancy Machleidt + Partner . In winter 2010 a discussion about a new international building exhibition for Berlin began, during the course of which a number of different ideas have been voiced by diverse players, such as the Senate Department for Urban Development and the Berlin Green Party. “Radical Radial!” proposes to re-urbanise the radial main streets, running from the historic city centre into the neighbouring state of Brandenburg.

"Main streets in decline
50 years after the books “The Murdered City” (Die gemordete Stadt) by Wolfgang Jobst Siedler and “The Death and Life of Great American Cities” by Jane Jacobs, both written in 1961, were published, the dream of the motorised world as part of the paradigm of modernity is still visible all around us. It is particularly evident when looking at the condition of most main streets in Berlin as well as in other German and international cities. While the planning paradigm of modernity has been widely overcome and most cities are experiencing an urban renaissance – at least in their central parts – main streets in particular are still highly dominated by cars. Cities have made smaller and bigger attempts to dismantle the heritage of the car-oriented city during the last decades - inner city highways have been demolished, lanes reduced, and new tram cars installed - however, many of these projects don’t follow regional strategies. Often they either focus solemnly on getting bicycle-infrastructure in place or deal only with the inner city. As soon as one leaves the dense inner city the concepts on how car-dependency can be reduced or on how streets can be re-urbanised become more and more sparse and vague. However, following the main streets from the inner city to the outskirts offers a large potential for a regional approach, as this article suggests. Such an approach could provide the topic for the next International Building Exhibition (IBA) in Berlin." ...

You can download the full article as pdf.

The article was first published in the book:

Bettina Bauerfeind, Josefine Fokdal (Eds.)
Bridging Urbanities
Reflections on Urban Design in Shanghai and Berlin
Reihe: HABITAT - INTERNATIONAL: Schriften der Habitat Unit, Fakultät VI Planen Bauen Umwelt der TU Berlin
Bd. 17, 2011, 160 S., 24.90 EUR, br.

ISBN 978-3-643-90131-6