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Mapping & Evaluating Play Areas in Berlin-Friedrichschain

Urban Design and Research


Type: Urban Design and Research / Status: Concept Project, Methods & Tools, TU Berlin /  Location: Berlin, Germany / Year: 2020

Work in Collaboration with Arita Dreshaj, Julia von Rinck, Niklas Scheuer

The pandemic has hit children especially hard. Schools are closed, contact restrictions prevent them from meeting friends, and the situation in many families is tense due to increased stress. This makes it all the more important for children to have sufficient opportunities for play, sports, and leisure. Preferably in places where the risk of infection is low and they get sunlight and fresh air - outdoors. The number, accessibility, and quality of playgrounds are therefore of central importance in making the pandemic more manageable for children, but also for their families. However, playgrounds are also during "normal" times places that contribute significantly to the healthy development of children and at the same time play a rather minor role in the distribution of funds, in the public interest, but also in research. Playgrounds are therefore the subject of the following mapping.

Playgrounds have comparatively small catchment areas and play an important role in the quality of small-scale neighborhoods. Therefore, a diverse neighborhood was searched for as an area of analysis, which allows for a small-scale qualitative study and at the same time can be representative of as large a part of the city as possible due to its heterogeneity. For the selection process, the LORs (living environment-oriented spaces) were used as predefined boundaries by the Berlin Senate. Although the stated goal of the Senate is to use LORs to represent neighborhood units with "structural unity" and "social homogeneity," the inclusion of LORs that are adjacent to but differ greatly from one another allows for a heterogeneous overall analysis area. North Friedrichshain was selected as the analysis area because several LORs are located next to each other here, which differ significantly from each other in terms of the built structure, historical development, and population composition.

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