Urban Structure 1990

Map Description

The eleven structure types with predominantly residential use cover over half of the area of Berlin (58 %).

Fig. 2: Shares of Structure Types with Predominantly Residential Use in their Total Area, in Percent

Fig. 2: Shares of Structure Types with Predominantly Residential Use in their Total Area, in Percent

With 43 %, “low buildings with yards” accounts for by far the largest share of residential areas, followed by “fifties and later row” (11 %). “Block-edge” and “eighties and nineties row” have the smallest shares (1 %) (cf. Fig. 2).

In terms of the distribution among the Berlin boroughs, a different picture emerges, however (cf. Fig. 3).

Fig. 3: Shares of the Structure Types with Predominantly Residential Use in their Total Area, in the Berlin Boroughs, in Percent

Fig. 3: Shares of the Structure Types with Predominantly Residential Use in their Total Area, in the Berlin Boroughs, in Percent

In Tiergarten, Kreuzberg and Schöneberg, a relatively high share of the residential area – approx. 80 % – is preserved as late 19th-century block development, much of which has, however, been altered massively. In the borough of Wedding, late 19th-century block development and row development account for half the residential area. The borough of Reinickendorf has, with 465 ha, the greatest share of row-type construction, followed by Spandau and Neukölln. The high-rise development of the postwar era occurs is no where to be found in the borough of Zehlendorf, but is an outstandingly high share of approx. 40 % in the boroughs of Lichtenberg, Marzahn and Hellersdorf. The low buildings with yards structure is entirely absent in the inner-city boroughs of Mitte, Friedrichshain, Kreuzberg and Schöneberg, while accounting for approx. three-fourths of the residential area in the outskirts boroughs Zehlendorf, Köpenick, Weissensee and Hellersdorf.

One finds the late 19th-century closed block development with wings and rear buildings, hardly changed since their origin, in large parts Charlottenburg and Wilmersdorf between the Lietzensee (Lake), Kurfürstendamm, Richard-Wagner-Strasse and Spandauer Damm. The narrow development with the typical courtyard structure has also survived to a large degree in Moabit and Wedding, in Friedrichshain between the City Rail Circle Line and Petersburger/Warschauer Strasse, as well as in the boroughs of Kreuzberg, Neukölln and Schöneberg between the corridors Neukölln Schiffahrtskanal (Ship Canal), Skalitzer Strasse, Gitschiner / Karl-Marx-Strasse, Gneisenaustrasse, Yorckstrasse and Potsdamer/Hauptstrasse.

One finds the late 19th-century closed development with few wings / rear buildings, including the area types “decorative/garden court” and “shed court,” in the former suburbs of Berlin outside the City Rail Circle Line. This construction structure, too, has hardly changed since its origin. Large areas exist in Friedenau, Steglitz, Tempelhof, Friedrichshagen, Oberschöneweide, Karlshorst, Pankow, Niederschönhausen, Spandau and in the borough of Reinickendorf west of Provinzstrasse.

Large areas of late 19th-century closed block-edge development with major changes, which emerged as the result of war-time destruction and reconstruction, or of reconstruction with massive demolition of late 19th-century block development, are found within the City Rail Circle Line, particularly in Charlottenburg between Otto-Suhr-Allee and Bismarckstrasse and along Spandauer Damm, in Tiergarten around the Spree Bend and Invalidenstrasse, and south of the Landwehrkanal (Canal) around Potsdamer Strasse, in Wedding between the City Rail line between Nordbahnhof, Gesundbrunnen and Bernauer Strasse, and in Friedrichshain west of the Warschauer / Petersburger Strasse corridor and, east of these streets, in the area of Frankfurter Allee. Also in the boroughs of Schöneberg and Wilmersdorf, there are many areas in which the typical late 19th-century courtyard structure was changed significantly by reconstruction and renovation.

Fig. 4 shows the late 19th-century structure types “late 19th-century block development with wings and rear buildings” and “late 19th-century block development with major changes” differentiated according to their area types at the borough level for selected boroughs. In the eastern boroughs Mitte, Prenzlauer Berg and Friedrichshain, the area type “closed courtyard” does not appear, since it was recorded under the type “courtyard.”

Fig. 4: Area Distribution of Various Late 19th-century Area Types, in ha

Fig. 4: Area Distribution of Various Late 19th-century Area Types, in ha

In the boroughs of Prenzlauer Berg, Kreuzberg, Charlottenburg and Neukölln, very much late 19th-century development of the area types “closed courtyard” and “courtyard” – over 200 ha in area – is still preserved in its original form. The share of very dense development of the type “closed courtyard” is relatively high in Neukölln, Wedding and Kreuzberg. Late 19th-century preservation-oriented reconstruction, under which the original block structures were largely preserved, occurred most prominently in the borough of Kreuzberg. In the boroughs of Tiergarten, Friedrichshain and Wilmersdorf, war-damaged late 19th-century block development was largely eliminated and replaced, particularly by new buildings of the “postwar block-edge” type. “Late 19th-century development with major changes” and “reconstruction by de-coring” became increasingly common in the borough of Wedding.

The twenties and thirties block-edge and row development type is found mainly outside the City Rail Circle Line. Frequently, the rows and large courts were erected in neighborhoods dominated by the “late 19th-century block-edge development with few wings and rear buildings” type, at the edge of the former suburbs of Berlin. They are as a rule connected to the City Rail and subway network.

The fifties and later row developments were erected mostly in the Berlin outskirts, outside the City Rail Circle Line. They were laid out on former open spaces (agriculture areas, etc.) without regard to existing transportation corridors or construction structures. Within the Circle Line, formerly built-up areas were replaced by row development. This includes large areas in the boroughs of Kreuzberg, Mitte and Friedrichshain, but isolated areas with row development on top of former late 19th-century block structure also exist in other inner-city boroughs.

One finds postwar high-rise development of the “unplanned reconstruction” type in the western boroughs within the City Rail Circle Line. Large areas of this type exist in the borough of Wilmersdorf around Bundesallee, in the borough of Schöneberg in the area of Nollendorfplatz and Kleiststrasse, and in Kreuzberg between Wilhelmstrasse and Stresemannstrasse. Otherwise the high-rise development of the postwar era occurred within the City Rail Circle Line only in the boroughs Kreuzberg, Mitte and Friedrichshain. Here smaller developments of the area type “high-rise” emerged. As a rule, the high-rise developments were erected outside the City Rail Circle Line. Such large complexes erected in West Berlin include Gropiusstadt in Neukölln, developments in Lichtenrade, Marienfelde, Lichterfelde and Spandau as well as the Märkische Viertel in Reinickendorf. In East Berlin the largest developments are found in Hohenschönhausen, Marzahn, Hellersdorf and Lichtenberg.

The eighties and nineties block-edge and row development of the pre-fab concrete construction type occurs mainly in Hellersdorf and Marzahn. Smaller settlements were built in Köpenick and Hohenschönhausen.

Construction structures with yards are as a rule found only on the outskirts of town. These low, single-family and duplex houses with yards are to be found in the entire outskirts area.

The villa development with park-like gardens emerged mainly during the late 19th-century in scenically attractive areas; this has hardly changed since then. One finds larger areas of this type near the Grunewald Forest in Nikolassee, Zehlendorf, Dahlem and Grunewald, in Lichterfelde, near the Tegel Forest in Hermsdorf and Frohnau, along the Dahme at Grünau, and in the area the Müggelspree at Rahnsdorf.

Development with yards and semi-private re-greening, in which villa development and/or low single family houses are interspersed with larger rental and studio-apartment houses, occurs mainly in the southern urban area, particularly in the transitional areas between villas and single family housing in West Lichterfelde and Zehlendorf.

Village-like development is still preserved on the outskirts of town only in the old village cores; in the eastern boroughs more and larger village structures can generally be found.

One finds the development with predominantly commercial and service use frequently in the old central business districts of the various parts of town. This applies particularly to both the city center areas of West and East Berlin concentrated around the Kurfürstendamm / Tauentzienstrasse and/or around the Alexanderplatz / Friedrichstrasse.

Structure types with predominantly small business and industrial use are concentrated along waterways and railroad lines. Heavily built-up small business areas occur less frequently than small business areas with low development.

Development with predominantly public facilities and special use is to be found relatively evenly distributed throughout the urban area. Obviously, green and open spaces are more available in the outskirts area than in the inner city. As traffic areas, the airports Tempelhof and Tegel, and the right-of-ways of the City Rail lines stand out.

Detailed information about structure types which do not serve predominantly the residential use are found in the Umweltatlas Maps 06.01 “Actual Use of Built-up Areas” and 06.02 “Inventory of Green and Open Spaces”.