vor 2 Jahren

Berlin to go, english edition, 04/2019

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  • Future
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  • Berlin


NEWS TO GO FUT URE Wanted: Visions for the future! Amazon invests in Berlin Investment climate on the wane This summer, an association of architects and engineers calling themselves “Berlin 2020 gGmbH” sent out an open tender for its two-phase “International Urban Planning Ideas Competition Berlin-Brandenburg 2070.” The goal of the competition is not to create a completely new capital region next to or in place of the existing one; instead, the idea is to draw on the region’s special features, strengths and particularities to foster the ongoing development of the existing metropolitan region. With its outstanding transport network, diversity of urban centers, above-average residential housing and comparatively unspoiled surrounding environment, the capital region boasts ideal conditions for the future. These conditions must first be recognized, fostered and developed further. A jury will select the 20 best submissions. The winning idea will then be displayed as part of an exhibition scheduled to start on 1 October 2020. Amazon has made a firm commitment to the German capital. According to media reports, the company is set to become the main tenant on 28 floors at the forthcoming 140-meter “Edge East Side Tower” located directly next to the train tracks at Berlin’s Warschauer Bridge. With a total of 36 floors, the building will be one of the tallest in Berlin and offer roughly 65,000 square meters of office space. In addition, the first two floors will be open to the public and feature restaurants, cafés and event spaces. The building developer is also planning to have a bar on the roof of the tower, which is scheduled for completion in 2023. The investment climate on Berlin’s housing market has deteriorated significantly. This is one of the most important findings of the 2019 IBB Housing Market Barometer. The current mood is an indication that the housing market continues to face enormous challenges, with respondents seeing equal declines in the investment climate both in the construction of new buildings as well as in existing structures. The current climate is also seen as being below average with regard to the construction of new rental housing, thereby garnering it the lowest rating in years. The collapse of Berlin’s investment-related framework conditions for measures in existing buildings is likely related to discussions surrounding the so-called “Mieten deckel” rent-control law that got underway during the current survey period. In the coming three years, experts expect a further downward trend in the investment climate in all subsectors. 6

Berlin stages enjoy continued success 10 Transfer Bonus anniversary Berlin universities international Berlin stages and orchestras will be able to look back on a very successful year in 2019. The city’s publically funded theaters, orchestras and dance companies are expected to have had a total of more than 3.3 million paying visitors this year. Berlin theaters are also expected to have generated 400 new productions in 2019. This means that the theater-going public in Berlin will have been offered a total of over 9,100 performances together with repertoire theatre programs. The demand for productions originating at Berlin theaters can also be seen beyond the city limits with a total of 1,622 guest performances abroad. “Berlin theaters, orchestras and dance companies can once again look back with pride on their performance in 2019,” noted Klaus Lederer, Berlin’s Senator for Culture and Europe. “For years, theaters and stages in our city have been achieving stable attendance levels above the 3 million mark. With an increase of 300,000 visitors, they have now consolidated Berlin‘s reputation as the center of the European theater, dance and music scene.” The Transfer Bonus program was launched on 1 October 2009 with the aim of making it easier for small and medium-sized tech-oriented companies in Berlin to gain access to the knowledge generated by the science and research community, and thus to strengthen their capacity for innovation. Almost 800 innovative projects have been realized so far. The Transfer Bonus program subsidizes the development of new products and services as well as qualitative improvements to existing products and processes with up to €15,000. The target groups for the funding measures are Berlin-based tech-oriented SMEs that cooperate with research and science institutions from the Berlin-Brandenburg region on their projects. With grants totaling over €7.5 million, the Senate has already deemed the program a successful model. At a rate of roughly 17 percent, Berlin had the highest proportion of international students in the 2018 reporting period, making it the frontrunner among all German federal states. Most of the roughly 32,000 international students came from EU countries as well as from China, India, the US and Russia. In the same time period, 14 percent of the academic staff at Berlin universities had a foreign passport, which puts the capital in second place nationwide behind Saarland in this category. Berlin universities also lead the rankings in terms of DAAD funding, receiving a total of €38 million in 2018 for exchange scholarships and international cooperation. “The world comes together in the ‘Brain City Berlin,’” says Governing Mayor Michael Müller. “Thanks to this strong international network, Berlin is one of the most successful centers of innovation today, and this benefits our entire city.” 7

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