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Berlin-Rummelsburger Bucht „Waterside Concept“


Urban Landscape at the Water

Far reaching ecological and environmental measures are significant fundamentals of urban development around Rummelsburger Bucht. At the same time, a new green and open area quality was achieved and contributions were made to nature protection.


Blick auf den CampusSource: Petra Nickel, Senatsverwaltung für Stadtentwicklung und Umwelt, Berlin

The area around Rummelsburger See, a former arm of the Spree in Berlin (population 3.38 million), was used for over one hundred years as an industrial location convenient for transport in the middle of the city. After a large section of the usage was abandoned, around 50 hectares of wasteland, a few listed buildings and the old Stralau village, an old landscape and settlement area, remained.

The development company "Rummelsburger Bucht mbH" - later Wasserstadt GmbH – has been carrying out the revitalisation of the 130 hectare area since 1994. A master plan, with the slogan "Städtische Landschaft" (“Urban Landscape”), plans the development of around 4,200 flats for 8,000 to 9,000 people by 2010, follow-up facilities and also 5,500 jobs (300,000m² usable space), the conversion of the listed buildings and development of extensive green and open spaces.

Project description

Blick auf den Ergänzungsbau des Campus mit sanierten GebäudenSource: Petra Nickel, Senatsverwaltung für Stadtentwicklung und Umwelt, Berlin

Ecology held great importance for this development measure from the very beginning. An environmental compatibility study for the Rummelsburg neighbourhood north of the bay, and the south section with the Stralau peninsula, forms the basis for this. After removal of old building substances, renaturation measures and area preparation, about 3,000 flats (status 2011) and several community facilities (kindergartens, primary school, youth centre) had been built. The rain water flows off into a drainage ditch system at the roadside.

The development of new green areas and the preservation of existing ones reduce the significant lack of open spaces and parks in the northerly adjacent districts of Friedrichshain and Lichtenberg. The extension of the uninterrupted river green belt and the preservation of the immediate waterside area were decided in the building plan. The old urban districts are connected to the new housing neighbourhoods via this area. A renaturation and planting concept secures the waterside and keeps it free of building. Parts of the waterside area were placed under nature protection. It was possible to preserve a biotope. The public green belt offers access to waterside areas which were not accessible until now and creates an attractive recreation area in the middle of the city with its 5.5km path and bicycle route around the bay and the Stralau peninsula. A skating track, weatherproof "Kraftmaschinen", a climbing garden (as an interim use), a youth leisure ship and also sport and play areas add to the leisure facilities, especially for youths and children.

Seesanierung: Ufer der Halbinsel StralauSource: Petra Nickel, Senatsverwaltung für Stadtentwicklung und Umwelt, Berlin

With the high standard of usage requirements, the demands on water quality are also increasing for the 50 hectare Rummelsburger See. A multi-stage action programme for ecological stabilisation and reduction of the nutrient input was put into practice between 1999 and 2001. Here, restructuring and purification measures at two waste water ditches which flow into the lake are the centre of attention. Furthermore, special programmes have been worked out by the Senatsverwaltung für Stadtentwicklung (Senate Administration for Urban Development) to improve the water quality in the Spree (e.g. waste water disposal plan (Abwasserbeseitigungsplan) 2001).

Project chronology

1993/94Development of a master plan and the environmental compatibility study
1994Definition as an urban development area
Since 1995Old building material removal, selective renaturation and area preparation
1997First housing buildings completed
1999 to 2001Action programme for ecological stabilisation of the Rummelsburger See
2002 to 2003Purification of one of the two flow ditches (slope ditches)
2007Abolotion of urban development measures
By 2012Further measures to improve the lake water quality


Blick auf die Neubauten an der Straße am ParkSource: Petra Nickel, Senatsverwaltung für Stadtentwicklung und Umwelt, Berlin

  • Revitalisation of industrial wastelands for a new inner city mixed use neighbourhood with the slogan "Städtische Landschaft" (“Urban Landscape”)
  • Improvement of the green and free area provision on high density urban districts by means of an uninterrupted green belt at the water
  • Ecological stabilisation of Rummelsburger See
  • Improvement of the accessibility of the waterside area and creation of an attractive recreation area

Types of measures

Blick auf die NeubautenSource: Petra Nickel, Senatsverwaltung für Stadtentwicklung und Umwelt, Berlin

  • Environmental management for carrying out old building material removal, renaturation and area preparation
  • Creation of a path and cycle route around the bay and peninsula
  • Renaturation and planting concept for the waterside areas
  • Multi-stage action programme for purifying the lake’s water (sediment conditioning, silt clearance, recirculation, reduction of the nutrient input)
  • Open air leisure facilities for young people and children
  • Protection for nature and biotopes for specific waterside areas
  • Draining of rain water via a ditch drainage system at the roadside


Blick auf die Neubauten am Ufer AstraSource: Petra Nickel, Senatsverwaltung für Stadtentwicklung und Umwelt, Berlin

Thanks to an integrated and ecologically-oriented green area and waterside concept, inner city neighbourhoods for living and working with a high leisure value emerged. Here, it was possible to harmonise natural protection and user-friendly open area development in an exemplary fashion.


Blick auf die Reihenhäuser in LichtenbergSource: Petra Nickel, Senatsverwaltung für Stadtentwicklung und Umwelt, Berlin

  • Wasserstadt GmbH Berlin (1998): Umweltmanagement im Entwicklungsbereich Berlin (Environmental Management in the Development Area of Berlin). Rummelsburger Bucht. Berlin
  • Senatsverwaltung für Stadtentwicklung (Senate Administration for Urban Development) (2001): “Help for the Rummelsburger See” ("Hilfe für den Rummelsburger See"). An action programme for ecological stabilisation. Berlin
  • Sutter-Schurr, Heidi (2000): Development Project Rummelsburger Bucht, Berlin. In: Selle, Klaus (Hrsg.): Siedlungen bauen, Quartiere entwickeln (Building Settlements, Developing Neighbourhoods). Arbeits- und Organisationsformen für eine nachhaltige Entwicklung, Band 2 (Work and organisational forms for sustainable development, volume 2). Dortmund

Further information

Poject site on Google-Maps: Berlin - Rummelsburger Bucht

The projekt site ist to be found at postal code: 10245 - town: Berlin - street: Fischzug.

Last update: 02.10.2017

Additional Information


  • Senatsverwaltung für Stadtentwicklung und Umwelt (Senate Administration for Urban Development and Environment), Abt. X OW Objektbereich Wasser (Specialist Department for Water), Hans-Jörg Haferburg, Tel. 030/90139-3740, eMail:
  • Senatsverwaltung für Stadtentwicklung und Umwelt, Abt. VIII E 2, Wasserwirtschaftliche Grundlagen und Planungen, Landeshydrologie, Koordination Umsetzung Europäischer Wasserrahmenrichtlinie, Matthias Rehfeld-Klein, Tel. 030/9025-2003, eMail:
  • Senatsverwaltung für Stadtentwicklung und Umwelt (Senate Administration for Urban Development and Environment), Abteilung IV, Wohnungswesen, Stadterneuerung, Soziale Stadt, Koordinatorin: IV B 22, Petra Nickel, Tel. 030 90139-4835, eMail:

Record inserted on 01.07.2004 by Lehrstuhl für Planungstheorie und Stadtplanung, RWTH Aachen and updated by theFederal Institute for Research on Building, Urban Affairs and Spatial Development (BBSR) within the Federal Office for Building and Regional Planning (BBR).

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