What is the aim of “Kiezblocks”?
Kiezblocks, or neighbourhood blocks, aim to provide more traffic safety and improve the quality of time spent in public spaces. By reducing through traffic, neighbourhoods will be quieter, the air will be better and everyone will be able to move around more safely. This is especially important for children and for older people who often walk and cycle.
How are Kiezblocks set up?The Mitte district office is setting up the Kiezblocks with a variety of traffic measures:
- Opposite one-way streets: These will be arranged so that motor vehicles are no longer allowed to drive through the neighbourhood.
- Bollards arranged crossways or diagonally: These will direct traffic in one direction at junctions. Cars will have to turn while pedestrians and cyclist can pass the barrier without any problems.
- Rededication: In certain areas, individual road sections can be dedicated solely to pedestrian and bicycle traffic, provided that this is possible at the location.
The modifications are selective in all cases. No kerbs have to be moved and no other costly construction measures are necessary. Therefore, Kiezblocks are a comparatively quick way of implementing and inexpensively introducing traffic-calming measures in the neighbourhood.
Does this automatically make the Kiezblock a “traffic-calmed area” (commonly known as a “play street”)?
No, because according to the German Road Traffic Act (StVO), “traffic-calmed areas” are associated with major reconstruction measures that do not currently correspond to the district’s Kiezblock concept.
I depend on my car. What will change for me as a resident?
Every person can still reach every house in the Kiezblock with the available means of transport, including by car. Only the routes to be taken will change, meaning that you might have to adapt your route a little.
Since it will become less attractive for people from outside the neighbourhood to drive into the Kiezblock to look for a parking space, we expect that the high demand for parking spaces will decrease somewhat and the parking situation for residents will become more relaxed.
What impact will the Kiezblock have on delivery traffic, refuse collection vehicles, fire engines, police cars or ambulances?
Diagonal barriers are checked with regard to the curve radii of lorries and refuse collection vehicles so that they can pass easily. Removable bollards will be installed for emergency vehicles, such as ambulances, police cars and fire engines, which can be removed if necessary.