Görtlizter Park

Sustainable Highway

All images are author's unless otherwise noted

The site of Görlitzer Bahnhof in 1865, this nearly 35-acre park has a deep history of a fight for sustainability. In the 1920s the Görlitzer Tunnel was constructed for subway use and this station is where Hitler arrived after returning from Czechoslovakia in 1938. Although it was first suggested in 1959 that the area be turned into a park, the owners of the park, the Deutsche Reichsbahn, sought to build a highway over the land instead, only to be halted by the building of the Berlin Wall and a highway’s subsequent uselessness in the area and due to large protests against its construction. Grassroots organizations, like Club SO 36, engaged in projects to develop the land into a park beginning in the early 1980s but once again the area’s future was put into question when oil was found in the site’s groundwater in 1981.

Slowly, though, work continued. A children’s farm was opened in 1981 and a swimming pool could be found from 1982-1987. In 1989 the Mutoid Waste Company built an art installation on the grounds and ever so surely the park began to form its own character and gain recognition. Today the park offers sport places, walking paths, and open lawns and also connects to a beautiful stretch along a canal.