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Re: green space

  • Subject: [cg] Re: green space
  • From: "Oliver Ginsberg" <ginsberg@blinx.de>
  • Date: Thu, 26 Jul 2001 00:26:44 +0200

here are the planning suggestions for the city of Berlin, Germany:
1. on private land
-private green space:                                 11m² pp
-children playgrounds (0-6year olds)        4m² per housing unit
2. within the city settlements
-parks                                                            13m² pp (of which 6m² are supposed to be in close reach)
-playgrounds                                                   1m² pp (netto 1,5m² brutto)
-sport areas                                                    3,5m² pp (netto, 5,0m² brutto)
-swimming facilities                                        1m² pp (outdoor areas)
- allotment gardens                                           5m² pp
-cemetaries                                                     3,5m² pp
3. outskirts
weekend recreational resorts                    100m² pp (nature areas) within 30 minutes reach of subway
But then again, what do numbers say about reality?. Statistically I have to admit Berlin is a green city (not talking in terms of politics now) , but as Lenny mentioned for N.Y. the distribution is rather uneven. Multicultural downtown areas may have an overall average of green space  at 4-5 m² pp, while upper middle class have acces to 100m² pp or more...well you know about these things, don't you?
As far as garden area is concerned, Berlin is topranking:  the overall space available just for gardening is 10m² pp, while play areas are a meager 0,4m² pp. Perhaps that is why community gardeners in the US may find likeminded open space activists in Berlin less likely in the garden scene, but rather in the children's right for play and nature experience scene...The allotment folks - well you know - pretty much like senior citizens resorts - nothing against them really, but they are not fond of children running around, screaming, building tree houses and all those things. Fact is: Old people are occcupying a lot of land that is not available for play purposes - even when they are dead they use about ten times more space than play areas (cars of course are even more space hungry taking 50 times as much space in terms of streets and parking lots)
And everybody is asking a lot of questions, why numbers of children's obesity, allergies, depressions and violent behavior are exploding
To sum it up: Don't just go for the ratios and the numbers of open vs. developed space! Try to draw a more detailed picture of how the available green spaces are distributed and used
Oliver Ginsberg
Association of adventure playgrounds and children's farms in Berlin
Kremmener Str. 9
10435 Berlin
fon  ++49-(0)30-442 37 18
fax  ++49-(0)30-449 01 67

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