A concentration of resources addresses the disparate, diverse nature of the site. In a unique and ambitious gesture, the project attempts to foster ownership and stimulate involvement on the part of private stakeholders. It aims to be the starting-point for urban renewal of the area - something which requires both time and space if it is to be sustainable.
OVER THE TRAIN is a bridge for pedestrians and cyclists.
In its role as infrastructure, the project creates a new sense of direction for the outlying districts. It opens a direct route between densely-populated areas in the south of the city and the centre and between the centre and the green corridor to the south. It opens up the blocks either side of the rail tracks and turns their rear facades into a highly attractive access route.
In its role as a public space, the project is both a thoroughfare and a place for stopping, sport, and relaxation, opening up one of the largest expanses in Berlin. The natural environment beneath has been preserved, while the upper areas are now linked. The bridge encourages local initiatives rather than major programmes, favouring chance encounters, the setting-up of innovative activities and the creative hijacking of poorly or little-used spaces.
As a piece of civil engineering, the project is both a local attraction and a symbol of urban ecology for the city as a whole. If supported by an active policy, it will first attract passersby and onlookers, then regular users and consumers, and eventually, inhabitants and investors. It is now up to the public authorities to initiate a change in the neighbourhood's image by creating a high-quality atmosphere.