In numerous arduous discussions at the meetings of the Round Table, residents, musicians, grass roots groups and civil servants had talked about how to reconcile culture in the park with the need of local residents to enjoy some peace and quiet.
SaveMauerpark, a group representing musicians and local residents, made extensive suggestions. It organised a petition, which 8,500 people have signed to date – many of them Berliners and people living near the park.
Over the many months since it formed, the group calling itself the “anti-noise campaign”, which had been set up to represent residents with a grievance, took part in a half-hearted way in the Round Table, repeatedly blocked attempts to find a compromise and even threatened the borough council with lawsuits.
The borough’s mayor has now asserted his authority and come up with some practical and conciliatory solutions for the 2019 season.
The new arrangements about music takes account of both the interests of the local residents and Mauerpark’s importance as a venue for cultural activities and provides a framework to work with for this year. The Freunde des Mauerparks welcome these arrangements and, in conjunction with the Kulturgemeinschaft Mauerpark, will do all they can to support Pankow borough council in implementing them.
At the end of the day, the Mauerpark Round Table was able to bring about much-needed clarification and it will continue to be a platform where all stakeholders can get together to work out practical solutions for any problems that might arise. If everyone is committed to this, solutions can be found even in difficult situations with conflicts of interest.
The Freunde des Mauerparks are relieved that the new rules on street music mean that music (in moderation) can continue in Mauerpark. Mauerpark can continue to develop as a place for making culture and keep its special place in Berlin’s social and cultural landscape.