Actual Use of Built-up Areas / Inventory of Green and Open Spaces 2010

Map Description

Each mapping unit for Actual Use of Built-Up Areas and for the Inventory of Green and Open Space is described separately below.

The Categories for Map 06.01, Actual Use of Built-Up Areas

Block Areas are shown as Housing if they are primarily used for residential purposes. Certain residentially related service enterprises, utilities and local green spaces are also included. Residential areas include both the dense inner city areas and the open housing estates at the periphery of the city.

The Mixed Use Areas may be similar to primarily residential areas in appearance. However, the housing is more strongly interspersed with commercial and service enterprises (department stores, offices, etc.), cultural facilities and small businesses. In exceptional cases, housing may account for as much as two thirds of the area, but as a rule, commercial, service enterprises and other small businesses predominate.

In some cases, Mixed Use Areas are characterized by a high share of retail enterprises, tradespeople, or small businesses, or extensively used commercial space and the associated sheds, workshops or warehouse/ storage areas, while residential use is clearly secondary, and accounts for only one third or at most half of such an area. If such areas are underused, they may be interspersed with fallow areas.

The negative impact of commercial use on neighbouring residential areas usually ranges between minimal and moderate, but is in some cases high.

Areas with high use intensity and density are known as Core Use Areas. They are found exclusively in the central areas of the inner city, and in the main borough centres. These are areas of particular importance for commercial, private and public services, and for cultural and scientific institutions. To some extent, higher-level public facilities, especially federal administrative offices, embassies, etc. in inner-city areas are assigned to this category.

Structurally, major differences are apparent between various parts of the city. The spectrum ranges from late nineteenth century block structures to high-rise buildings built in recent decades. In general, these areas are characterized by high urban density and a high degree of imperviousness.

The characteristics of Commercial/ Industrial/ Large-Scale Retail Areas include large industrial buildings, warehouses and storage/ parking areas. The housing share is subordinate, with around one third at a maximum. This category also includes railway freight yards and commercial areas on railway land, waterside lots of a clearly commercial character (shipyards, boatyards, etc.), as well as large-scale retail and other large-scale commercial operations, including the parking facilities belonging to them. Disturbance due to noise and emissions can be rated from moderate to very high.

Sites of the Public Use category include cultural, university and research, health care, administrative, security and law-enforcement facilities, religious institutions such as churches, child care centres and other youth recreational centres, schools and sports facilities. A few children’s playgrounds and retirement homes are also included in this category.

Special Use Areas include such areas as the Olympic Stadium and the Messegelände trade fair complex, as well as large restaurants in recreational areas oriented toward group tours.

The sites of the category Utilities Areas include power, gas, water, district heating and sewage-treatment plants, and facilities of the waste removal and sewage departments.

Public roadways are not included in the use mapping process. The Traffic Areas so described here therefore include primarily the railway lands, private roadways and airfields. Moreover, traffic islands and airports also count as Traffic Areas, to the extent that they are marked on the block maps. “Green spaces associated with traffic areas” – i.e., along roads, rail lines and bodies of water – are also assigned to this category in the mapping process, albeit as dual use areas which are also counted as Green and Open Spaces.

Freight railway stations and commercial areas on railway land are, by contrast, not counted as traffic areas, but are rather assigned to the category Commercial/ Industrial/ Large-Scale Retail.

Parking spaces including parking garages were only considered to be traffic areas if they occupy an entire block. Parking areas with ascertainment sizes exceeding one hectare, but which are located within a single block in combination with other uses (e.g. residential use), are not separated off by a block segment partition, but are rather assigned to the dominant use.

In the Traffic Areas category also includes railway lines and railyards of the urban railway (S-Bahn), the long distance railway and the tram system, and also parts of the underground/subway lines which are outside of the tunnels in open cuts.

The Central Bus Station (ZOB), and the bus and tram depots are also assigned to this category.

The Weekend Cottages are by definition not permanently inhabited, and are primarily used for recreation. Those areas assigned to this category in the 1985 Environmental Atlas have been retained; moreover, areas have been assigned to this category if they are used similarly to allotment gardens, but are not listed in the inventory of “Berlin Allotment Gardens” as per the Federal Allotment Gardens Law.

Compared to a single family home structures with residential use, these blocks are generally characterized by a smaller structural volume and a smaller-scale subdivision of the lots. Compared with Allotment Garden Areas however, these areas are more densely built-up, and the lots are generally larger.

Areas classified as Construction Sites were those with a typical construction site character, as a rule, with barren soil. Once the foundations and first floors of the new building are recognizable, it will be classified according to its planned use. If this is not obvious from the aerial view or from the K5, the matter may be researched at the relevant urban planning office. In the current actual-use maps, the category Construction Site has not been assigned to any block area.

Categories of the Map 06.02 Inventory of Green and Open Space

The category Forest includes all wooded areas of the Berlin forests, as well as those wooded stands outside the Berlin forests which appear clearly in aerial photography as self-contained forest stands. The forests include reforested former sewage farms and other fallows with forest-like vegetation.

Not included in this category are forest-like parks, such as the land around Glienicke Castle, which is part of the parkland inventory of Berlin. Such areas have been assigned to the use category Parks/ Green Spaces and to the area type Forest.

Bodies of Water include all natural bodies of water – rivers, lakes, ponds – and also canals, retaining and seepage basins of the Berlin Water Authority, provided they are recognizable as water surfaces or as water engineering structures.

The category Meadows and Pastures includes meadows, pastures and enclosures used for agricultural purposes, and also experimental areas used by the universities for similar purposes, and former sewage fields, regardless of how the products of these fields are used. It is assumed that the use of meadows and pastures can be seen in the aerial photography.

Farmland includes areas identified in aerial photography as being used for agricultural purposes. The difference from Meadows and Pastures is that in this case, the land is periodically sown, fertilized and harvested.

The use categories Meadows and Pastures and Farmland may alternate over the course of only a few years in the same area. For these two agricultural use categories, it is therefore particularly important that the mapping process reflect the current state of knowledge.

The category Tree Nurseries/ Horticulture includes both the acreage of private tree nurseries and garden centers, and of borough garden centers and city horticultural schools. These are areas with predominantly outdoor cultivation. Facilities with purely indoor operations are rather assigned to the category Commercial and Industrial Use.

Block areas with borough garden centres, horticultural schools, the work yards of the horticultural offices, and certain research facilities, such as the Institute for Crop Research and the corresponding teaching and experimental fields of the universities, are mapped as dual use together with Public Use/Special Use. Due to their high demand for space, tree nurseries and horticultural facilities are largely located at the outskirts of the city.

In addition to those facilities listed in the SenStadt Directory of Green Spaces, the category Parks/ Green Spaces includes other green spaces, if they are similar in appearance to a publicly accessible park facility and are apparently subject to regular maintenance gardening. Thus, for example, well maintained green spaces associated with traffic areas along roads and motorways are assigned to this category, albeit as dual purpose areas with traffic use. Smaller, public-square-like green spaces and playgrounds are also mapped as a Parks/ Green Spaces, provided they are less than approx. one third impervious; otherwise they fall under the category of Urban Squares/ Promenades. Blocks of the use category Parks / Green Spaces are also generally assigned to the area type Parks / Green Spaces. Very extensive parks and recreational facilities characterized almost exclusively by extensively maintained or non-maintained wooded or meadow-like areas are in some cases assigned to the area types Forest or Fallows (e.g., the Glienicke Public Park).

Some special, not freely accessible facilities, such as the Botanical Gardens or the zoos in Tiergarten and Friedrichsfelde, are mapped as Parks/ Green Spaces, but with the dual purpose assignment as Public Use/ Special Use. Other public facilities, too, may be associated with green facilities. These parklands are then not delimited separately, even if their size exceeds the ascertainment limit of one ha. They may be mapped as dual purpose areas, in order to also connote their predominantly “green” character.

By contrast however, private outdoor facilities, playgrounds, etc. in residential areas are not mapped as a Parks / Green Spaces, since they are part of the character of the residential use of those areas, and the open space structure of these blocks is further differentiated in the type assignment (see comments on the Environmental Atlas Maps 06.07/06.08).

City Squares/ Promenades are the public spaces of urban living. City squares serve as places of sojourn for leisure and recreational purposes, as meeting areas, market places, etc., and are often located in front of railway stations and other representative public buildings.

Promenades are spacious pathways that provide pedestrians and cyclists with space for movement away from road traffic. Promenade may also include some more highly impervious median strips, provided they are not used as parking lots.

Squares and promenades generally have a higher degree of imperviousness than parks and green spaces.

Cemeteries include both areas currently used for burial purposes and former cemeteries, provided they are still recognizable as such.

The data on the inventory of cemeteries in Berlin maintained by the Senate Department for Urban Development is the basis for the scope of these areas. Honorary graves and monuments, on the other hand, are not assigned to the area type Cemetery, although they are recorded in the Berlin inventory of cemeteries; they are mapped as Public/ Special Use, and assigned to the area type Culture.

However, cemeteries are not generally considered areas of Public/ Special Use. Only when usually small-scale blocks are largely occupied by a church building, and the surrounding cemetery is only a subordinate feature will a dual use as Public/ Special Use be assigned, in which case the block is then assigned to the area type Church. However, if a church or cemetery chapel is located on a large cemetery only in a subordinate function, no dual use is assigned.

Structurally, cemeteries differ from one another mainly in terms of their stock of trees. While older cemeteries and forest cemeteries are essentially characterized by their very old stocks of trees, many newer cemeteries are still largely without larger trees.

The basis for the assignment and delimitation of the category Allotment Gardens is the SenStadt map and list of Berlin allotment garden colonies, which record the allotment gardens with appropriate use, as defined by the Federal Allotment Garden Law. Other areas with similar use characteristics are classified as Weekend Cottages with Allotment-garden-type Use.

Fallow Areas are areas currently not in use and not maintained, on which variegated stands of vegetation can often develop. A distinction is made between Fallows Free of Vegetation on the one hand, which include mostly excavations, soil or rubble dumps, or demolition areas, where no vegetation has yet taken root, due to the fact that their utilization has only recently been abandoned. In some cases, the site conditions ensure that no vegetation will enter the area for some time. These may be brownfields where little vegetation can grow due to the very high degree of imperviousness, or else sand dunes and beaches, on which spontaneous growth of vegetation occurs only very slowly, due to a lack of nutrients, or to regular disturbances.

Another category of Fallows are Fallows with Predominantly Meadow-Like Vegetation. On open brownfield sites, a vegetation of ruderal perennials and grasses often establishes itself during the first few years. Especially on nutrient-poor sites, this vegetation can remain relatively constant over the course of several years. In general, however, unstable conditions prevail.

All brownfield sites which cannot be clearly assigned to one of the other fallow or forest categories are mapped as Mixed Vegetation – Meadows, Trees, Bushes. The development of vegetation on a fallow site depends on many conditions, such as the abiotic site conditions, the initial vegetation and anthropogenic influences, so that on long-fallow sites, various successional stages often alternate within a small area.

If on the other hand, an area is covered almost entirely with trees, it will be assigned to the category Forest.

The category Sports Facilities includes both covered and uncovered sports facilities. All sports use areas are at the same time mapped as Public/Special Use.

These include not only sports fields, swimming pools and beaches, but also riding, golfing, archery and water sports areas. The latter are characterized by small dockyards, boat hangars, club houses, parking lots, etc., with a high proportion of green space. Clearly commercial water sports areas (dockyards, boat-building facilities, etc.) are assigned to the category Commercial/ Industrial Use. Some fairly extensively used beaches (without changing rooms, kiosks, etc.) are assigned to fallow or forest categories.

The covered sports facilities include primarily those housed in halls, such as indoor pools and ice skating rinks, and also stadiums and multipurpose halls, in which non-sporting events such as concerts may also be held.

Use Distribution for Berlin

The following tables and figures show the shares of all use types in relation to the total area of Berlin. It should be noted that 1633 areas have been assigned both to a land use category of built-up areas (nos. 10 through 90) and to a category of non-built-up areas (nos. 100 through 200).

With this approach, major potential green and open space areas can be documented on other use areas. This applies particularly to Public / Special Use sites, Utilities facilities, Commercial/ Industrial areas and Traffic areas. These areas are shown on both maps, i.e., double (cf. the explanations of dual use in the Methodology section).

Since for the evaluation of area shares, each area only once can be considered once, both cases– green priority and construction priority – have been calculated separately.

The calculations are based on the area size data of the ISU. The block areas were calculated from the Geographic Information System (GIS) based on the block segment map ISU5.

Table 2 shows the absolute and percentage area shares of different uses of the total area of Berlin.

Link to: Vergrößern
Tab. 2: Area shares accounted for by various uses in the total area of Berlin Area sizes based on block segment map ISU5
Image: Umweltatlas Berlin
Link to: Vergrößern
Fig. 1: Shares of the various use categories of the total built-up area of Berlin, Sizes of areas based on ISU5, block segment map, construction priority
Image: Umweltatlas Berlin
Link to: Vergrößern
Fig. 2: Shares of the various use categories of the total stock of green and open space, and of the total built-up area of Berlin, respectively Sizes of areas based on ISU5, block segment map, construction priority
Image: Umweltatlas Berlin

In terms of the absolute area of all Berlin boroughs and ha, the following overview emerges:

Link to: Vergrößern
Tab. 3: Area shares of different uses of the total area of Berlin Area sizes based on the block segment map ISU5, construction priority
Image: Umweltatlas Berlin

A presentation of the distribution of use types among the boroughs in absolute terms in ha, and a relative terms in % of the area of the borough, is shown in Figures 3 and 4.

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Fig. 3: Shares of the various use categories of the total built-up area of Berlin, height of areas based on ISU5, segment block map, construction priority
Image: Umweltatlas Berlin
Link to: Vergrößern
Fig. 4: Shares of the various use categories of the total built-up area of Berlin in %, area sizes based on segment block map ISU5 , construction priority
Image: Umweltatlas Berlin

Description of Map 06.01 Actual Use of Built-Up Areas

Map 06.01 Actual Use of Built-up Areas shows the different use categories by their shares of the built-up area of Berlin and their distribution throughout the city area (as of December 31, 2005-12-). Figure 5 elucidates the distribution of the use shares further.

More than the half of the built-up area of Berlin is used for Housing. Small-Business and Industrial Areas and Public Facilities account for 12% and 16%, respectively – still a relatively large share of the built-up area of Berlin. The Traffic Areas are next, without the roadways not shown as traffic areas, with 6%, and then the Mixed Use Areas, with approx. 5%. Very little space is taken up by the Core Areas, Utilities Areas, Traffic Areas, Weekend Cottage Areas and Allotment Garden Type Use. The current map contains no block areas mapped as Construction Sites.

In the distribution of the use categories of built-up areas within the urban area, characteristic structures can be recognized. Thus, purely residential or commercial areas exist in the outskirts areas much more frequently than within the City Rail Circle Line; the Mixed and Core Area use categories are more heavily represented in the latter. Commercial Areas are particularly concentrated along waterways and railroad lines, due to the more favourable transport conditions. One often finds Mixed Areas and scattered Core Areas in the old village centres in various parts of the city. Particularly characteristic is the concentration of the Core Areas in both the western city centre around Kurfürstendamm/ Tauentzienstraße, and in the eastern city centre area of Alexanderplatz/ Friedrichstraße. Public Use Areas are distributed throughout the entire urban area relatively evenly. Utilities Areas occur mainly in the outskirts, frequently in the vicinity of commercial areas.

The described structures are also reflected in a comparison of the distribution of the land use categories within the boroughs (cf. Fig. 5).

Link to: Vergrößern
Fig. 5: Shares of selected use categories in the built-up areas of all Berlin boroughs, with area sizes based on the block segment map ISU5, construction priority
Image: Umweltatlas Berlin

Examples for the characteristic use distribution in the outskirts areas are the boroughs of Marzahn-Hellersdorf and Reinickendorf, with 63 % and 60 % residential use and 13 % and 10 % industrial use, respectively, while in the borough of Mitte, the borough’s central functions are reflected by its shares of only 33 % Housing Areas, but more than 5 % Core Area use and approx. 13 % Mixed Area use, as well as a high share of Public Use Facilities (30 %).

This function is not shown so clearly for the western city centre around Kurfürstendamm/ Tauentzienstraße, with Core Area shares of only 2 % or less, since that core area is distributed among the three boroughs of Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf, Mitte and Schöneberg-Tempelhof.

The inner city boroughs of Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg and Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf have relatively low shares of residential area, with 42 % and 47 % respectively; correspondingly, the share of public use facilities is very high, with 22 % and 23 %, respectively. Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg and Mitte are the boroughs in which the largest shares of the original mix of uses are most clearly apparent. They are the boroughs with by far the largest Mixed Use shares (15 % and 13 %).

Zehlendorf-Steglitz (65 % residential use) stands out as a residential borough with a low share of commercial use (5 %).

Changes compared with the previous edition

A direct comparison with the figures of the 2008 Edition is only partially possible, since on the one hand, the descriptions of the mapping unit have undergone extensive examination, and have in many cases been adapted to the changed data bases. In this context, e.g., the three previous categories of mixed-use in the actual use mapping process have been merged. For another, the rules on the admissibility of dual use, as well as to the admissibility of combinations of various land uses and land types have been analysed, and the data base checked for plausibility and consistency on the bases of these rules. To what extent changes in the area shares of the respective uses are due to methodological reasons, and not to actual use changes, cannot be precisely quantified. It is likely, however, that the area share due to actual use changes is considerably less than the methodologically related changes.

For example, one determination was that all sports related uses on the Green and Open Space map were also to be assigned to the Public/ Special Use category of the actual use map, which was previously not consistently the case. Much of the increase in Public / Special Use areas is very likely due to this methodological change.

The increase in Commercial and Industrial Areas too is at least partially due to a methodological change: All areas that in the 2008 Edition been assigned to the Public / Special Use category and at the same time to the area type Postal have in the 2011 Edition been assigned to the Commercial and Industrial Use category. In addition, the central market halls and port facilities that were previously mapped as utility facilities, also are now assigned to that category.

Another example of a methodologically caused change in the area shares where the increase is the Weekend Cottage Areas. In the course of the review, it was established that only those areas were to be included in the Allotment Gardens category of the map of Green and Open Space use which are included in the Senate Department for Urban Development Berlin’s Inventory of Allotment Gardens. All other areas the visual appearance of which in the aerial image was similar to that of allotment gardens, but which were not listed in the inventory of allotment gardens of Berlin, were now to be transferred to the category “Weekend Cottages and Allotment-garden-type Uses”. This change of relatively large areas – based on the two use categories concerned – of the map of Green and Open Space Uses to a category of built-up areas moreover caused the share of built-up area to increase slightly, without an actual change of use having taken place.

The significant decrease in traffic areas in the borough of Tempelhof-Schöneberg, which also involves a decrease in traffic areas of the city as a whole, was however due mainly to the closure of Tempelhof Airport – i.e., to an actual change in use. As a result, the fallow land between the runways, etc., is now no longer assigned to dual use as a traffic area. The share of road surfaces has thus been reduced here, with no reduction of imperviousness or other modification of the land having taken place.

Description of Map 06.02, Inventory of Green and Open Spaces

Map 06.02, Inventory of Green and Open Spaces, shows the different use categories and their shares of the non-built-up areas of Berlin, as well as their distribution throughout the city.

The largest share of the Inventory of Green and Open Spaces is located in the outskirts of the city, including particularly the large wooded areas of the Grunewald and Düppel forests in the southwest, the Spandau and Tegel forests in the northwest, and the large forest areas in the borough of Köpenick in the southeast of Berlin. Forests account for 39% of all Green and Open Spaces. Bodies of water account for 13% (cf. Fig. 6).

Agriculturally-used areas, which account for almost 9% of the inventory of open space, are found particularly in the north-eastern area (Pankow and Weißensee). Other agricultural areas are located in the eastern, southern and western outskirts. Allotment Gardens, which account for some 12% of the open space inventory, are found almost exclusively outside the City Rail Circle Line, in the outer boroughs. Often, they are located near canals, rivers and railroad lines. The currently unused Vacant Areas are distributed throughout the entire urban area, particularly along railroad lines and bodies of water, as well as current and former airports; they account for some 11% of the total open space. Tree Nurseries and Horticultural areas are found only in the outskirts, while Sports Facilities, Cemeteries, and Parks and Green Spaces are located throughout the entire urban area.

The area sizes of the open spaces increases as one moves from the inner city area toward the outskirts. Moreover, in the outer areas of the city, the various categories of open space are often located adjacent to one another, and thus form larger contiguous open systems, while the various open areas in the inner city usually occur in isolation, and are surrounded by built-up areas. In the inner-city boroughs, the inventory of open space is dominated by parks.

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Fig. 6: Shares of selected use types of green and open areas in the Berlin boroughs Area sizes based on the block segment map ISU 5, green priority
Image: Umweltatlas Berlin

Changes compared to previous issue

As mentioned in the previous chapter, a direct comparison with the figures of the 2008 Edition is only possible to a limited degree. In the map of the Green and Open Spaces, too, the mapping units have undergone a revision. For example the three previous allotment garden categories, as well as the two forest categories were each combined into one category. The use category Camping Sites was abolished completely in the context of the current revision.

As mentioned in the description of the Actual-Use Map of Built-Up Areas, the decrease in the category Allotment Gardens is an example of changes in area shares due to methodological reasons. All areas the visual appearance of which in the aerial photography was similar to that of allotment gardens, but which were not listed in the Inventory of Allotment Gardens of the State of Berlin, have now been transferred to the category Weekend Cottages and Allotment-Garden-Type Uses of the Actual-Use Map of Built-Up Areas.

The relatively sharp increase in the category Parks/ Green Spaces is probably also due to methodological changes: the targeted evaluation of the directory of green spaces maintained by the Senate Department for Urban Development resulted in a number of areas which had previously been mapped as forest or fallow land, were now assigned to the category of Parks/ Green Spaces.

Overall, we cannot reliably determine the extent to which changes in the area shares of the respective uses have been due to methodological factors and not due to actual use changes, so that a quantified evaluation makes no sense in this regard.