Berlin - Europe

Do a trip report here....go to another city and want to relate it to what KC is doing right or could do better? Give us a summary in here.
Riverite
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Berlin - Europe

Postby Riverite » Sat Feb 10, 2018 1:29 pm

I recently returned to Berlin, after having lived there some five years ago. I always knew that it didn't have proper suburbs. It was one of the things that drew me into urban development & urban planning. I know that the wall had a lot of effect on that. I find it interesting to see a city that essential froze all development from the 40's to the 90's. Now a third of their city is natural, and they have one of the best transportation networks in the world. I know that the Berlin example is anecdotal, but I wonder if we can take any lessons from it. Obviously they had their own problems like rebuilding essentially half of the city. What do you all think?

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Highlander
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Re: Berlin - Europe

Postby Highlander » Sat Feb 10, 2018 7:08 pm

Berlin is the capital of a large country with a very successful economy so they have the in-place driver to redevelop the city and the situation is probably unique in the world in that way. Unfortunately, KC doesn't have the economic drivers that can produce anything close to the frenzy of activity Berlin has seen. The transportation network is indeed incredible although by European standards, Berlin is not that dense of a city. I also love the architectural contrasts from what little pre-war that got preserved (or rebuilt) to the 1950-60 Soviet and Western styles to the Post Wall ultra modern in the government section, Potsdammer Platz and along the urban route of the wall itself. That said, not all of that new building really works that well, I do not like the architecture in the government sector all that much and Potzdammer Platz is uninviting and a bit disappointing. It reminds me of new urbanism in the US - it's cool at first glance but it doesn't really integrate into its surroundings all that well. I do think the new hauptbahnhoff is really well done. Maybe my favorite train station in the world.

Unrelated to your question, did you see the Berlin Stadtschloss (palace)? It's the most ambitious rebuild in Germany since the Dresden Frauenkirche was rebuilt. I am planning a trip back to Berlin to see it when its complete. Supposed to be done this year.

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Re: Berlin - Europe

Postby Riverite » Thu Feb 15, 2018 10:46 am

I did see the palace, it isn't finished yet. While I do like the frauenkirche, I'm slightly wary to be excited for this one. I've seen enough of the rebuilt areas in Potsdam to know that it won't ever look quite right

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FangKC
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Re: Berlin - Europe

Postby FangKC » Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:38 am

It is amazing how fast they rebuilt cities like Berlin, Frankfurt, and Dresden after WWII, and how much investment was required. They were devastated and in 40 years were rebuilt. It took almost 10 years to clear the rubble alone. Forty years ago was 1978, and KC has blocks all over our central city and downtown that have sat vacant and not redeveloped for sixty or seventy years. Most of the North Loop was demolished for a future redevelopment scheme that never happened.

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Re: Berlin - Europe

Postby Highlander » Fri Feb 16, 2018 2:53 pm

FangKC wrote:It is amazing how fast they rebuilt cities like Berlin, Frankfurt, and Dresden after WWII, and how much investment was required. They were devastated and in 40 years were rebuilt. It took almost 10 years to clear the rubble alone. Forty years ago was 1978, and KC has blocks all over our central city and downtown that have sat vacant and not redeveloped for sixty or seventy years. Most of the North Loop was demolished for a future redevelopment scheme that never happened.


The big difference is that there is not a huge suburban world of sprawl in Germany to live in. Germany is pretty small in terms of area and if they lived anything like Americans, there would be nothing but suburbs from the Polish to French borders. Germans did not have a choice but to rebuild. There were some pretty poor and not-so-dense suburban like apartment complexes that sprung across Germany in the 50's/60's with the worst examples being in former East Germany. Get out of the center of Dresden and many of the apartment complexes are still pretty awful - ugly, spread out, nothing really urban about them. Soviet Utopian crap.

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Re: Berlin - Europe

Postby warwickland » Mon Jun 25, 2018 1:04 pm

Highlander wrote:Unfortunately, KC doesn't have the economic drivers that can produce anything close to the frenzy of activity Berlin has seen.


i don't buy this...GDP of KC is comparable (although not sure what is being measured with regards to the geography of "metro" Berlin).

american cities always have these astounding GDPs, however, that are p*ssed away...they are money making machines.

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Re: Berlin - Europe

Postby Highlander » Tue Jun 26, 2018 1:13 am

warwickland wrote:
Highlander wrote:Unfortunately, KC doesn't have the economic drivers that can produce anything close to the frenzy of activity Berlin has seen.


i don't buy this...GDP of KC is comparable (although not sure what is being measured with regards to the geography of "metro" Berlin).

american cities always have these astounding GDPs, however, that are p*ssed away...they are money making machines.


Actually I think what I said, although I barely remember it 6 months later, is pretty much true. Berlin's metro has about 6 million people. It's also the capitol of a country with 82 million people and the largest country in the EU. The economics driver for the most part was moving the capitol of Germany out of Bonn and to Berlin in the 90's and although that was a while back, the building in the private and and governmental sectors has been pretty spectacular since. Many German companies moved their HQ's to Berlin and several global companies European European HQ's there. KC doesn't have that driver - companies aren't moving to KC to follow a relatively recently located governmental center. The empty space that constitutes the former wall has been totally infilled plus some large high profile restorations of pre WWII era buildings are still going on.

I was there 3 years ago and I counted 50 cranes from the top of the Dom and then I lost count and gave up.

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FangKC
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Re: Berlin - Europe

Postby FangKC » Tue Jun 26, 2018 9:33 pm

Berlin attracts a lot of people from within Germany, and out. Germany takes in a lot of immigrants and refugees, and many of them live in Berlin.

Berlin in 2009 was estimated to have 100,000 to 250,000 non-registered inhabitants.

Of the city population, 54 percent were single-person households.

In 2014 the German capital registered a migration surplus of approximately 40,000 people.

In December 2015, 621,075 registered residents were of foreign nationality, originating from approximately 190 different countries.

Berlin has more foreign residents than KCMO has total residents.

As of December 2013 there were approximately 1,000,000 people (about 30 percent of the --City proper-- population) with an immigrant background living in Berlin, with significant differences in their distribution. The immigrant community is diverse, with Middle Easterners (including Turks and Arabs), smaller numbers of East Asians, Sub-Saharan Africans and other European immigrants, Eastern Europeans forming the largest groups. Since the accession of Romania and Bulgaria to the European Union there has been a Romani influx. About 70,000 Afro-Germans live in Berlin.

There are more than 25 non-indigenous communities with a population of at least 10,000 people, including Turkish, Polish, Russian, Croatian, Palestinian, Serbian, Italian, Bosnian, Vietnamese, American, Romanian, Bulgarian, Chinese, Austrian, Ghanaian, Ukrainian, French, British, Spanish, Israeli, Thai, Iranian, Egyptian and Syrian communities.

An estimated 200,000–350,000 Muslims reside in Berlin, making up about 6–10 percent of the population.

The three largest universities combined have approximately 100,000 enrolled students.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Berlin


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