Urban Planning and Cultural Identity

Urban Planning and Cultural Identity

Urban Planning and Cultural Identity

Urban Planning and Cultural Identity

Synopsis

This work links debates in urban planning with debates in cultural geography/studies, using a combination of case studies (in Detroit, Belfast and Berlin) and reviews of literature in cultural studies. The work illustrates the important role planners play in constructing space.

Excerpt

I would like to thank the many people who gave generously of their time in interview and who extended hospitality and advice, particularly in Berlin and Detroit. In Belfast, influences are harder to disentangle. In Berlin I am grateful in particular to Dr.-Ing. Günter Schlusche, Building Co-ordinator with the Foundation for the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe. Dr Hanns-Uve Schwedler, Director of the European Academy of the Urban Environment, kindly facilitated the exploration of some of the identity and planning issues explored in this book at a joint symposia between the cities of Berlin and Belfast in February 1999 and December 2001. Funding assistance from the Anglo-German Foundation and Northern Ireland Community Relations Council is acknowledged, as is the help in so many ways of Jenny Johnson, also with the European Academy. The following individuals were interviewed in Berlin at various times since 1996: Christina Laduch, former Director of Planning for Berlin Mitte; Lea Rosh, leading campaigner for a Berlin Holocaust Memorial; Wilhelm V. Boddien, leading campaigner to rebuild the Berliner Schloss; Cornelius Hertling, Chair of the Berlin Chamber of Architects; Dipl.-Ing. Herbert Zimmermann, Berlin planner and former chair of the European Council of Town Planners; Detlef Will, former Building Director in Berlin Steglitz; Wolfgang Schäche, author on Third Reich architecture; Dipl.-Ing. Bernhard Schneider, author on public space and museum architecture and consultant to various Berlin Ministries; Tom Bremen, architectural restorationist working on the Museum Insel; Andrea Gärtner, Culture Department of Prenzlauerberg; Karin Nottmeyer and Frau Paesler in the Senatsverwaltung für Bau- und Wohnungswesen und Verkehr; Philip Meuser with the Berlin Stadt Forum; Peter Martin, Director of Commercial Marketing with Partner für Berlin; Gunnar Pantel, Head of Planning with Rummelsburger Bucht, Berlin, and Wilhelm Schultz, Head of Regional Planning, Land Brandenburg.

For help with German sources I must acknowledge contributions from Sabine and Juliane Engelhardt, Sigrid Reiter whose memory endures, and Andrea Fiddy and Keith Johnston, especially for many enjoyable discussions around Savigny Platz. The translation services of Susanne were invaluable and her tolerance, for the most part, of my introspective musings when I was neglecting other things can probably not be repaid.

In Detroit personal thanks for help and hospitality are due to former colleagues in the Michigan Department of Commerce, Office of Community

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