In the German city of Eberswalde, a future council presented its recommendations on 7 September 2022. The randomly selected participants, had addressed the topics of housing, transport, urban development and climate as well as making the city centre more attractive and ideas for a "liveable Eberswalde 2035+".
Particularly close to the hearts of the future council members was the expansion of barrier-free housing and the provision of better offers for social and health infrastructure. They also wanted comprehensive internet coverage and an optimisation of local public transport.
Low-threshold participation offerings
The city of Eberswalde tested a new form of citizen participation as part of a model project between November 2021 and June 2022. The project relied on an online participation platform eberswalde2035.de as well as on a Future Council to provide low-threshold participation offerings for urban development issues. For the Future Council, 30 participants were selected at random with the help of the residents' register.
Background to the citizens' participation is the development of the city of Eberswalde away from a shrinking city to an attractive location in which developments in the nearby metropolis of Berlin are reflected positively and dynamically. Against this background, Eberswalde is facing the future questions and issues of a city of tomorrow that is green, climate-adapted and sustainable, social, modern and in close exchange with its inhabitants.
Mayor Götz Herrmann was satisfied with the process: "Eberswalde has a long tradition and a lot of experience in participation processes and has always been willing to try out new formats and instruments without prejudice. We are grateful that our participation in the model project 'My City of the Future' has given us the opportunity to implement the Future Council and the participation platform and to be in a continuous exchange of experience with seven other cities in the state of Brandenburg, each of which is designing its own formats and projects. I would also like to thank all the participating citizens for their commitment to the Future Council."
The Future Council had devoted seven meetings to the five topics determined by the participants. From their point of view, these play a special role in the further development of the city of Eberswalde. On this basis, they jointly decided on recommendations. The result was 39 concrete thematic proposals for a liveable Eberswalde 2035+. The resulting citizens' report was handed over to Mayor Götz Herrmann and First Deputy Mayor and Head of the Building Department Anne Fellner.
Results flow into urban development
The results of the Future Council are now available to the city council and will be included in future considerations for urban development.
Read more: Eberswalde Future Council
Photo: (from left to right) Patrick Heger, Anna Müller, Antje Ziegler, members of the Future Council, handing over the citizens' report to First Deputy Mayor Anne Fellner and Mayor Götz Herrmann.