Baumkirchen centre

former locomotive turntable as open-air theatre © 2020 Sonja Weber mgk

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Footbridge, west © 2020 Sonja Weber mgk

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Aerial view © 2020 Marcus Hassler mgk

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Footbridge, north © 2020 Sonja Weber mgk

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Relics © 2020 Sonja Weber mgk

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Surface web © 2020 Sonja Weber mgk

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Trackage © 2020 Marcus Hassler mgk

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Open air theatre top view © 2020 Marcus Hassler mgk

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Seating area © 2020 Sonja Weber mgk

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Lageplan © 2020 mgk

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former locomotive turntable as open-air theatre © 2020 Sonja Weber mgk

Footbridge, west © 2020 Sonja Weber mgk

Aerial view © 2020 Marcus Hassler mgk

Footbridge, north © 2020 Sonja Weber mgk

Relics © 2020 Sonja Weber mgk

Surface web © 2020 Sonja Weber mgk

Trackage © 2020 Marcus Hassler mgk

Open air theatre top view © 2020 Marcus Hassler mgk

Seating area © 2020 Sonja Weber mgk

Lageplan © 2020 mgk

Baumkirchen Mitte - A new quarter is being created

On the 15-hectare site of the former Munich 4 railway depot in Berg am Laim, the "Baumkirchen Mitte" urban quarter has been under construction since 2013. For almost 70 years, locomotives and freight wagons were shunted and repaired here. Now the area offers space for about 1,300 residents, jobs, retail and public green spaces.
The basis for the development plan procedure was an urban planning and landscape planning ideas competition held in 2010 by the state capital and CA Immo, from which the design by Peter Ebner & Friends and Mahl Gebhard Konzepte emerged victorious. The open spaces with their integrated play areas are intended to invite residents and visitors to linger and relax.

The stock a "hot spot" of biodiversity

Plant growth on active railway areas is subject to permanent disturbance. When railway areas fall out of use, the vegetation reacts relatively quickly. This is why the disused railway depots are now characterised by mosaic-like vegetation, and are given their own charm by the open ruderal areas, which alternate with emerging birch trees and framing, older woody plants.
In short, the railway depot has developed into a near-natural railway wasteland through decommissioning. Substrates poor in humus (e.g. track ballast) hardly store any water and thus favour sparse rough grasslands. This has created a "hot spot" of biodiversity, which, in combination with the remaining tracks, gives the area a special identity. Several protected animal species have an occurrence focus due to the dry and hot site conditions ideal for them and the mixture of sparse, low vegetation and sunny edges and bushes. Numerous insects such as the blue-winged grasshopper and the blue-winged sand cricket, but also small vertebrates such as the sand lizard can be observed on the priority area - they are strictly protected (§7 (2) 14, BNatSchG).

(Maintenance) concept

In order to preserve this near-natural dry site with its high species diversity, a maintenance and development concept has been drawn up. Without further maintenance, succession leads to forest-like stands, which is why the recurrent removal of woody growth and the keeping of suitable, sunny sites free are important measures.
Deadwood is left in the succession areas to provide shelter for insects and small vertebrates. The raw soil rotation not only offers reptiles such as the sand lizard an ideal location to lay their eggs in the sandy soils.

Minimal intervention - monitoring and adventure trail

By means of elaborate monitoring and specially developed footbridges, it was possible to comply with nature conservation requirements and still make the area accessible to local residents as a near-natural recreation area. The enormous difference in height between the residential buildings and the ecological priority area was compensated for with ramps. The adventure trail in the lower-lying track area can be accessed via stairs on the west side and by a barrier-free ramp on the east side. The elevated path leads past the historic railway turntable, which was once used to move wagons and locomotives. A grandstand has been built here so that the locomotive turntable can serve as an open-air theatre.


Award Landscape and Environmental Planning / Landscape ExperienceGerman Landscape Architecture Award 2021

Jury verdict:
The newly created urban district of Baumkirchen Mitte has a seven-hectare open space on the site of the former railway depot, which lends it a very special identity and creates the opportunity to experience a landscape and nature that has become rare in the city.

The basis for this is the careful handling by the designers of the vegetation structures typical of railway areas and the fauna spectrum adapted to them.

A footbridge rising slightly above the level of the park makes the special aesthetics of the mosaic-like, rapidly changing vegetation patterns tangible for park visitors. Abandoned track and signal systems, as well as the former turntable, become elements of the park design and thus witnesses to the history of this site.

In order to sustainably secure the special and value-defining site characteristics of this park landscape, a maintenance concept was developed with foresight to accompany the design process.

The newly created park is a successful example of how, through the respectful treatment of the existing stock, a varied, changing piece of urban nature could be created that provides a contemporary response to the deplorable decline in species.

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Planning offices

mahl·gebhard·konzepte
München

Employees
Johannes Kruck, Cyril Dejonghe

Project period
2013 - 2019

Size
15 ha

Construction amount
ca. 5 Mio. Euro

Client
CA Immo Deutschland GmbH

Address

München

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Prices & Awards
German Landscape Architecture Award 2021
Award Landscape and Environmental Planning / Landscape Experience