How to masterplan the Creative City - a Berlin Experience


Dr. Martin Schwegmann addressed this question in his keynote speech.


As studio commissioner for Berlin, he has a master plan - the master plan Art Studios 2020. This is less a blueprint than a toolbox and roadmap for an important sub-segment of sustainable urban development in Berlin. The master plan was and is rather a vehicle for feeding political demands into the urban development policy process. The latest publications, the White Paper Atelierförderung and Art City Lab 2, are just such instruments for bringing new and innovative ideas and concepts into these political processes. In addition, if one wants to derive something from Berlin's experience, it became clear in the course of the lecture that a city can in principle only have a courageous, future-oriented urban development if there is a strong and mature civil society and prototypical projects that fill the visions with life, can iteratively feed practical experience into planning and turn the implementation of planning into a sustainable and well-founded process in exchange with urban society.


The lecture was part of the Futur Ville event at the Festival of the Future City, which took place in Bristol from 16 to 18 October 2019. Set over three days the festival – which aims to be the largest public debate about the future of cities – brings together politicians, writers, artists, scientists, change-makers, academics, journalists, students, the public, economists, futurists, policy makers, roboticists, philosophers, filmmakers, think tanks, charities, social enterprises, city-builders and more.


The arts contribute more to the UK economy than agriculture, yet creative spaces, studios and communities are being dispersed, displaced and dissolved. Bristol is changing. Sometimes this is good and essential; at other times it can create concern, confusion and opposition as existing communities are priced out; much-loved cultural facilities are lost; and the city – as cities are becoming elsewhere – turns into a place where only the wealthiest people can live.


Futur Ville is a series of events inspired by the complex relationship between artists, creative communities, urban regeneration and cultural policy. Futur Ville aims to instigate a wider discussion about the future of our cities’ art spaces and look at how we can make our cities better places to live without having a negative impact.


Taking place over two days (Fri 18 and Sat 19 October 2019), Futur Ville looks at planning creative cities; regeneration without displacement; embedding art in communities; who leads gentrification; and how to build creative spaces around and with existing communities.

© Martin Schwegmann 2020