Written by Sarah Orlos Fernandez
Hermann Ehlers Platz in Berlin Steglitz has been deteriorating for years. The renewal has been discussed for a long time. So far, very little has happened. Construction won’t start here until 2025.
From the fountain opposite Stieglitz Town Hall, water flows into a green pool filled with cigarette butts, champagne glasses and plastic waste. There is human feces on the edge.
Hermann-Ehlers-Platz is no longer a popular place to stay. For many, it is just a passage to Schloßstrasse.
“This trash has never been so full,” says a passerby. An employee of the Berliner Wasserbetriebe, who cleans here almost every day, also talks about the “worst fountain.” Residents are upset that the square has now become a hotspot for homeless people and groups of drunks.
The renewal is long overdue. A decision to restructure the BVV was already made in 2018. There was a participation process in 2021. There is a preliminary draft plan, but depending on the region it is not ready for construction yet.
“Dealing with the tree roots that form the cover is a central issue,” said district councilor Orban Aikal (49 years old, Green Party) when asked by BZ. Therefore, a tree disk was made from the future material in order to test the material that had not been used before in the area.
These are the plans
In addition to the tree panels and floor coverings, the fountain also needs to be refurbished and replaced with a water feature. Raised beds need to be dismantled and new seating options created with benches. It is also planned to create a new pedestrian area on the existing road on the north-eastern side of the square.
It may take some time for this to happen. The district expects construction to begin in the spring of 2025. There was originally talk of 2024. The Hermann-Ehlers-Platz redesign is expected to cost €2 million.
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