How can I avoid the hustle and bustle


2. Functional picture of the inner city

The current demands on an inner city are diverse. In its shape it should reflect the history and regional importance of the city. As a point of identification - for visitors and residents alike - a city center must be livable and lively, without letting the action degenerate into the hustle and bustle.

Street spaces and squares in the city center should offer a suitable ambience for staying, strolling and meeting, not excluding anyone, but at the same time avoiding the dominance of socially marginalized groups. The city center should enable undisturbed shopping and be more than just a neatly decorated shopping area. It is a place of cultural events that attract visitors and offers its residents a pleasantly quiet living environment. The social security of residents and visitors must also be guaranteed in the evening.

In view of these demands, the quality of stay and variety of uses are of central importance - a variety of uses that can arise in the city center through the superimposition of numerous functions. The city center is not just a shopping area, but also a place to live, work, educate, and enjoy leisure and culture.

A prerequisite for meeting the requirements of an attractive city center is an efficient transport connection to the other areas of the city and the surrounding area. We expect direct and trouble-free connections to the city center, which ensure the accessibility of all administrative, commercial, commercial or training facilities for all modes of transport.

For the duration of the stay in the city center, parking spaces for cars and bicycles are necessary. The space requirement for residents must be covered, the inner-city residential areas must be effectively kept free of foreign traffic. Sufficiently dimensioned and safe lounge areas must be created for residents and visitors.

In many West German cities, the variety of uses is disturbed by the dominance of retail and the dictates of rents, and traditional, mostly small-scale retail is being pushed into less attractive areas of the city. The retail situation is exacerbated by the increasing competition from peripheral retail locations.

The diversity of uses in the city center, which is desired for planning purposes, and the necessary prerequisites for their realization are only available in the city center, however, in a limited amount of space. Urban planning framework conditions must be taken into account when redesigning and building new buildings in order to counteract the uniformity of inner cities. In addition, the urban planning design options are limited by the sometimes conflicting demands of individual functions on public space and the incompatibility of individual forms of use.

The given and necessary restrictions should be taken into account through careful planning, since it is precisely these restrictions that set a framework that helps to maintain the authenticity of the inner city.

© Friedrich Ebert Foundation | technical support | net edition fes-library | September 1999