Image of the new safe confinement of April 2015 by Tim Porter, Wikimedia Commons
On the occasion of commemorating the Chernobyl disaster which happened then 25 years ago an interview with Dörte Siedentopf (a physician who has since 20 years been working in disaster relief programs for victims of the disaster and an antinuclear activist) had been published on Germanys major public news website. It was reposted today on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the disaster. Amongst others Dörte Siedentopf drew my attention to a 1959 agreement between the IAEA and the WHO. Read the rest of this entry »
Ashes to ashes, dust to dust – remnants of the pub, as they are wafting over the railway tracks.
I am sorry to keep on talking about local politics. The pub from the last post has now been fully demolished. The little shops, which are adjacent to it are currently also under threat. A threat though of a slightly different sort.
Today – despite many protests by inhabitants, despite a successful collection of signatures – a traditional Berlin pub, which was built in the 19th century and which was constantly in operation up to last year – a survivor of two world wars – was torn down. The current plans are to substitute it with a “kleinteilige Shopzeile” (clustered shop row).
I had invested a lot of time and energy in trying to save the pub. The pub was one of the few locations, where relaxing discussions could be made also without tons of money. The death of this pub is unfortunately symptomatic for an ongoing demolishment of a very important piece of european culture. From my neigbours I heard similar things from Poland and here a link to a Guardian long read about the death of pubs in Britain.
update 2.3. 2016:
On November 19, 2015 I had made an official question in front of the district assembly wether the district could buy the pub/restaurant in order to avoid the tear down. I got the answer: No the district won’t buy the pub.
The day before yesterday the head of the department for city development Mr. Gräff invited the inhabitants of the neighbourhood to a party promotion event, which was set up as a kind of townhall meeting in a local church. Questions and comments to local politics could be made. I asked Mr Gräff why the department of city development and in particular he, Mr. Gräff finds that supporting the 500.000 Euros/year running costs of the castle which is right next to the former pub/restaurant is considered more important than buying the pub/restaurant, which would have probably costed -including renovation- 500.000 Euro once and would have then caused no further running costs.
Side remark: In emails to him and other local politicians I had also tried to make clear that tearing down the restaurant was a shock for many, that there are not many similar public places to go to anymore and that a lot of those shocked may not be the kind of people who usually protest openly and loudly. I had also proposed that if the district buys the pub/restaurant one could for example turn it into a pub/restaurant/cafe-like meeting point which includes the people who had usually been there and likewise have some integrative approach, which could also include refugees.
His answer to my question at the townhall meeting was about (recorded from my memory):
Well – one can have different opinions about the pub/restaurant and I had another opinion than you. Like there are old ladies for whom it is easier if there are shops in the vicinity. Furthermore 500. 000 Euro is still a lot of money and one can use this money better for e.g. preschools and schools.
Remark 1: The size of the clustered shop row is about 60 sqm, so there will be about two small shops, where the pub/restaurant had been. Moreover there are already existing and prospected shops in the ultimate vicinity.
Remark 2: Mr. Gräff is a member of the supervisory board of the company who just recently got the mandate to run the the castle.
I have currently not so much Internet time left, partly because I currently have a job, where I have to sit a lot in front of a computer and partly because I have been trying to improve things in my local surroundings (partially as it seems in vain though) – so no long explanations. I hope you see at least what I see in the images above.
temperature curve: mean of anomalies (monthly deviations of values from monthly mean over measured time period, annual mean of that)
methane curve: annual mean of values
Acrylic paint on cardboard. 60×70 cm. artwork by Marion Ditzen. Title: “Keine Gähngefahr mehr auf der Artig Week: König Hui und das Ming-Pling-Bling.” Any resemblances to real persons are purely accidental and not the intent of the artist.
I would like to remind you of the Berlin Art Week, which is taking place this week in Berlin:
The fourth Berlin Art Week will be held this year from 15–20 September 2015. For six days, art lovers from all over the world will gather in Berlin.
By the way I hope the above artwork by Marion Ditzen will eventually be donated FOR SALE for supporting a local restoration project here in Marzahn. I might eventually talk about that project later. Please try to convice the artist in the comment section below that the donation for such a project would be a good idea.