Archiv für die Kategorie 'Politics'

Everyone is welcome in Mauerpark

Friday, 31. May 2019 um 18:02

The absurd idea of erecting a fence around Mauerpark and charging admission left us speechless.

What makes Mauerpark attractive, what makes it special is the fact that it is a place where everyone can participate in cultural activities. It doesn’t cost anything. And everyone is welcome in Mauerpark: Berliners and visitors, rich and poor, young and old. We have always made sure no-one is excluded because they don’t have enough money. That bucks the gentrification trend that can be observed in so many other places in the city.

We were clearly not alone in vehemently rejecting this absurd idea. A number of key players in the community also rejected it: Sören Benn (Major of Berlin Pankow), Matthias Zarbock (leader of the Die Linke party in Pankow district council) and Roland Schröder (leader of the SPD party in Pankow district council).

We cherish Mauerpark as an internationally important place for people to meet, a venue for cultural activities, a place that celebrates diversity and what brings people together rather than keeping them apart. It is unique and we will continue to protect that uniqueness.

 

Pankow Tourism Concept (German): Tourismuskonzept Pankow 2018+

In the News (German):
Der Mauerpark bleibt eintrittsfrei – Tagesspiegel 31.05.2019
Mauerpark soll kostenlos zugänglich bleiben – RBB24 31.05
Touristen sollen Eintrittsgeld – Tagesspiegel 31.05.2019
Streit um Tourismus-Konzept – Berliner Zeitung 31.05.
Muss man im Mauerpark bald Eintritt zahlen? – BZ 31.05

 

Abgelegt von Commentary, Politics
von Mauerpark Redaktion
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The Borough of Pankow has decided: Music is part of Mauerpark

Tuesday, 7. May 2019 um 16:34

Six months after the Kulturgemeinschaft Mauerpark launched the Mauerpark Round Table, the borough’s mayor, Sören Benn (Die Linke party) has announced new park rules:

www.berlin.de/ba-pankow/aktuelles/pressemitteilungen

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.

Abgelegt von General, Planning, Politics
von Mauerpark Redaktion
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Peaceful Walpurgis Night celebrations cancelled

Friday, 12. April 2019 um 14:14

For the last 15 years Mauerpark has enjoyed peaceful celebrations to dance in the May. This was made possible by the hard work and commitment of artists and neighbours. This year, the celebrations have been cancelled as a result of complaints by residents.

After so many years, the excellent collaboration between Pankow Council, the police and volunteers has come to an abrupt end. Pankow Council and the police are no longer willing to turn a blind eye to these peaceful and uncommercial celebrations in their established form and time frame.

Fearing possible complaints from residents, the police have announced tough conditions and restrictions for the celebrations. The Peaceful Walpurgis Night team has therefore pulled out of any further involvement. It cannot see how it will be possible to guarantee peaceful and creative celebrations in Mauerpark without music.

Mauerpark had become a magnet on Walpurgis Night for “young rioters,” who came from all over Germany to pick a fight with the forces of law and order. The peaceful celebrations were initiated by residents in 2004 as a creative response to this – a response that worked for 15 years. Now a group of residents trying to prevent any kind of “noise” in Mauerpark have put an end to it. The team regrets this development and calls for more appreciation and support from the authorities and the other residents.

The Peaceful Walpurgis Night team will dance in the May elsewhere. It will hold its own private party without having to deal with constraints and restrictions. What happens in Mauerpark and how the residents deal with it remains to be seen. One thing is certain: the Peaceful Walpurgis Night team will not be able to influence it.

Abgelegt von Events, May Day, Politics
von Mauerpark Redaktion
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Mauerpark: a living memorial and cultural hotspot

Tuesday, 26. March 2019 um 16:19

Mauerpark is an important cultural hotspot with a special symbolic value. It is important for Berlin’s borough of Pankow but at the same time it enjoys worldwide fame and popularity.

The site where the Berlin Wall used to be – where armed guards with orders to shoot once kept people apart – has evolved into a peaceful place of cultural diversity that is full of life.

On sunny days people from all different backgrounds meet here and create culture in a way that is unique to Mauerpark: in a spirit of tolerance, openness and respect for difference.

Mauerpark has become a living memorial that is unparalleled anywhere in the world, acknowledging the past without being stuck in it.  Each person can experience the transformation that has taken place here and play a part in creating a peaceful future.

Freunde des Mauerparks e.V. and some of the parties in Pankow’s Borough Council are committed to preserving this special place.

The following motions are scheduled for debate:

These motions will be discussed during the Council’s session on Wednesday, 27 March. Drop in and demonstrate just how important Mauerpark is.

Where: BVV-Saal, Haus 7, Fröbelstr. 17, 10405 Berlin
When: from about 6 pm

Abgelegt von Politics
von Mauerpark Redaktion
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Sunday karaoke – the heart of Mauerpark

Monday, 11. March 2019 um 13:12

Mauerpark is not just a park. As a small reminder: it means “Wall Park” and is where THE Wall used to be – with its barbed wire, watchtowers and armed guards with orders to shoot.

But now, every Sunday, it is full of people from all over the world, including Berliners who have lived here all their lives and the newcomers who are proud to call it home. Mauerpark is unparalleled as a place that brings together people of all different kinds. We hear a lot these days – especially from the mouths of politicians – about the need for us all to live peaceably with one another. But what happens on a Sunday in Mauerpark is not just talk. It is a living, breathing example of the fact that this is actually possible – unscripted and spontaneous without any intervention from politicians.

The Sunday karaoke sessions are the very heart of Mauerpark. Gareth, who started the whole thing 10 years ago and remains upbeat and cheerful in the face of obstacles, is eager to carry on. He encourages everyone to have a go. Making anyone feel excluded is simply out of the question. People of all ethnicities and backgrounds, young and old, with great musical talent or none at all – it doesn’t matter: everyone gets a chance to be heard here. And the hordes of spectators are always generous and encouraging, willing people to do well. That creates a positive and uplifting atmosphere that restores your faith in humankind. An article in the New York Times calls karaoke in Mauerpark “one of Berlin’s most unforgettable experiences.”

It goes without saying that living peaceably with one another includes having consideration for the park’s neighbours and complying with safety regulations. That is part of the job of the city’s public agencies. But with all respect for their work, we mustn’t forget that Berlin has become a world-class city. Once infamous for the Wall that divided it, it is now famous for its openness, unconventionality and creativity. And Mauerpark makes a unique contribution to that reputation. We must not allow ourselves to be bogged down in petty feuds. Let us make sure we continue to shine as an example of how people power can overcome anything – even the mother of all walls.

Abgelegt von Commentary, Politics, Video
von Chris Charlesworth
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Mauerpark Round Table No. 3 at Rathaus Pankow

Saturday, 26. January 2019 um 13:30

Tuesday, 29.01.2019, 5:30 – 8:30 pm
Rathaus Pankow, Breite Strasse 24A-26, 13187 Berlin
in the Grosser Saal

Pankow Council has convened the third meeting of the Mauerpark Round Table on Tuesday 29 January 2019 at 5:30 pm in the Grosser Saal of the Town Hall, Rathaus Pankow, Breite Strasse 24-26, 13187 Berlin.

As agreed at the first two sessions of the Round Table, this meeting will now debate the possibility of updating the existing park regulations, designating functional areas for different uses in the park, and deploying park rangers.

The aim of the third Round Table is to find a sustainable solution that is acceptable to all stakeholders and to define possible ways forward that will enable local residents and the artists using the park to get on well together.

A range of people is expected to attend: representatives of the local council, of civil society, the public administration and business. The Mayor of Pankow, Sören Benn (Die Linke party), will also be there. The meeting has been organised by the newly established Büro für Bürgerbeteiligung (Public Participation Office).

For minutes of the first two meetings, please go to:
www.berlin.de/ba-pankow/

Information on the initiators of the Mauerpark Round Table:
www.mauerparkkultur.de

Appeal by the Freunde des Mauerparks:
www.mauerpark.info/2018/10/culture-in-the-mauerpark

Abgelegt von Events, General, Politics
von Mauerpark Redaktion
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Culture in the Mauerpark – a bonus or a bane?

Wednesday, 3. October 2018 um 16:26

The hot summer months in Mauerpark are over for this year and so things should start to quieten down naturally: the crowds, the music and the protests.

So it is time to take stock and the attempt to do that has led to intensive discussions among all stakeholders: local residents, street musicians in and round the park, the parks and gardens’ department, the Public Order Office, the police and local politicians.

There is a feeling of frustration across the board:

  • Playing music without an amplifier is still allowed in Mauerpark but it is simply not practical for street musicians.
  • The Public Order Office does not have the capacity to ask musicians and park users to comply with the regulations.
  • The police and the Public Order Office do not have adequate measuring equipment and are therefore obliged to pursue each reported disturbance even if it is only subjective and not actually exceeding the permitted decibel level.
  • Local residents who are upset by the noise feel abandoned and that there only remedy is to hope for rain or colder weather.

The discussions on the Internet and at our information stand in Mauerpark very quickly became emotional. It was predominantly about subjective perceptions. With all due respect for people’s feelings, it is crucial that we explore the facts if we are to be able to work together and find solutions.

  • What is the level of noise that impacts on local residents?
  • Which streets and which apartment blocks are affected?
  • What other factors – including those that have nothing to do with Mauerpark – are contributing to people feeling disturbed.
  • Have different sources of noise and different times of day been taken into account?
  • How can park users help ensure that people living near the park suffer less disturbance?
  • Can any structural measures be taken to provide a barrier against the noise?

It would be helpful to enter into a dialogue that gives all parties the opportunity to voice their points of view and needs. The Mauerpark Roundtable launched in September by the Kulturgemeinschaft offers a suitable communication forum for discussing various problems at regular intervals and developing solutions.

The ball is then in the court of politicians: they must come up with concrete instructions for public authorities, detailing how Mauerpark can be conserved as an important social and cultural venue, on the one hand, while effectively protecting local residents from extreme disturbance caused by inconsiderate behaviour, on the other hand.

It would be a good idea to deploy professionals in the park, who would act as a point of contact for all stakeholders and would have the job of making sure people act with greater consideration for each other. The Kulturgemeinschaft Mauerpark already took the first step in this direction with its Respect the Neighbourhood project, putting information posters on the pavements outside Mauerpark and at the entrances, and talking with the street musicians.

Mauerpark has developed into a haven of cultural diversity in an atmosphere of friendliness and cooperation. We must not allow it to become a place of conflict, culminating in the exclusion of certain user groups. In the course of its long history, Mauerpark has undergone an extraordinary evolution. Once the site of the “death strip” separating East and West Berlin, it is now valued as a place where people of all nationalities come together. We need to take this spirit into the discussions and talk to each other from the heart and not with a clenched fist.

The Friends of Mauerpark association will work with Mauerpark’s Kulturgemeinschaft to support this dialogue and do all it can to find solutions that reconcile the interests of all groups.

Abgelegt von Commentary, General, Politics
von Mauerpark Redaktion
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Demonstration at Mauerpark: “Music connects!”

Saturday, 15. September 2018 um 09:30

For many years now, Mauerpark has been a popular meeting place on Sundays for local people, visitors, artists and street musicians. The flea market and karaoke are key features, but it is the street musicians who play a major part in the character of Mauerpark Sundays.

For several weeks now, musicians who have been able to play undisturbed for years have had to put up with residents reporting them to the police, in some cases resulting in them being charged with public nuisance offences and having their equipment confiscated.

A number of visitors to Mauerpark, local residents, and musicians have got together to work creatively and constructively. To draw attention to the situation, they invite you to join them at a demonstration on Sunday in Mauerpark under the banner “Music connects!”

Demonstration

Sunday 14.10.2018 – 2 o’clock
At Mauerpark

More Info:
instagram.com/SaveMauerpark
facebook.com/SaveMauerpark
twitter.com/SaveMauerpark

 

weiter lesen …

Abgelegt von Events, General, Politics
von Mauerpark Redaktion
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