4 April 2008

Inner City Deforestation


Blurbanism ∕ Holes

One could accuse us of lazy journalism, but we haven’t needed to travel far to bring SLAB-worthy stories over the last few weeks. Everything’s right on our doorstep at the moment, including the developments currently taking place in our local inner-city jungle situated on a piece of bombed-out land stretching between Chorinerstraße and Zehdenicker Straße.

Bird’s-eye-view clearly shows huge area of wild vegetation

The following dramatic photo was taken early in February, where it became apparant that all the bugs, birds and small mammals thriving in the increasingly jungle-like plot weren’t paying enough rent, and don’t have proper jobs in the advertising industry.


This photo was taken last week:


Slash-and-burn methods followed by aggressive soja planting is more South America’s thing than Berlin’s, where beigey-bland apartment blocks usually follow the bulldozers, so it’s obvious what’s going on here. Mitte’s ten-year-long status as a «rennovation zone» with guaranteed rent caps, has now dissolved, making the district even more attractive for real estate investors looking for well-off tennants.

SLAB’s plans to hang out in the neighborhood’s cafés and talk loudly about the plans to build a gigantic discount supermarket on the site, or a branch of IKEA, in the hope of causing concern and discomfort for all, have failed since real life is swifter, and bullshittier:

Your new neighbours: fine and arty

The banner now hung on the site is already a riot of marketing bullshit, and the website dishes up another tonne or two of the same. More of that, and more about real-estate marketing in Berlin in another post. Reinforce your puke bags.