Within the Summer University course ‘DesignBuild: community spaces with refugees in Berlin’ we where seeking to think beyond the narrow and sectoral way of housing refugees: Can architects and urban designers help to design spaces of coexistence and mutual exchange, where refugees are not only welcome but become active in shaping urban spaces? How can the agency of refugees be mobilized to co-produce a more inclusive and diverse city?
The Summer University ‘DesignBuild- community spaces with refugees in Berlin Buch’ will now bring together actors involved in the revitalisation of a former sportsground right in the very center of Berlin Buch: local administration, organisations of civil society, planners, refugees and academics.
A public sports-ground, we call it ‘Panke-Platz’, was abandoned for many years. In the light of around 500 refugees living in the closeby AWO refugee camp and the conflicts with old Buchers that their arrival provoked, local stakeholders of administration, institutions and civil society now initiated it´s revitalization. The ‘Panke-Platz’ aims to become a place of mutual exchange and encounter between old and new neighbors in Berlin Buch. It aims to trigger civil engagement in the neighborhood, strengthen democratic culture and form the base for an intergenerational and intercultural living together. During the summer school an overall concept for the place was developed and designed and a first initial part that will serve as a kickoff and starting point for this highly needed place, many Buchers are long waiting for, was realized
The design and the realized objects are just one facet.
For a longterm sustainable development of networks within the neighborhood, the whole process should be embedded in a series of participative community and outreach actions and activities such as soccer-games, barbecues, boule concourse and many more.
In a one week workshop, the small soccer field was installed, a huge communuity table and a sitting platform where constructed, an entranec gate markes the site and a pinboard enables to post news and invitations.
1 Big and 1 small soccer pitch
2 Beach-volleyball (22x12m)
Ping Pong Boards
Multifunctional building (400 sqm) to be realized in a longterm perspective
The facilities where divided in long term (building+ big soccer pitch) and short term possibilities (e.g. small soccer field, boule lane, sitting area) to be realized.