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Living on the Water: 52° Nord Sponge City

More green spaces, less soil sealing – that’s what the climate needs. In Berlin-Grünau, BUWOG is developing the neighborhood 52° Nord on a former industrial wasteland on the banks of the Dahme River. It is based on the concept of a “sponge city”, embedded in a comprehensive sustainability strategy that pays special attention to the integration of biodiversity and seepage areas for rainwater. Rainwater is becoming more and more valuable as periods of drought and heat become longer and more frequent, even in Germany. It is therefore not drained away in the sponge city of Grünau. Instead, in addition to the green spaces, a 6,000 m2 rainwater retention basin with plants was integrated into the planning process. Based on the sponge city model, this basin collects the rainwater from the surrounding properties, cleans it biologically and returns it to the natural water cycle. It also serves as a biotope for aquatic animals and insects and helps to create a cooler microclimate on hot days. The neighborhood’s sustainability strategy also includes green roofs, an efficient local heating network and the advancement of electromobility.

BUWOG’s THE VIEW trio was completed in June 2021.

In 2020, the BUWOG sponge city project was presented with the “Award Deutscher Wohnungsbau” for German construction projects. This is awarded by the Federal Foundation for Building Culture (Bundesstiftung Baukultur) in partnership with other organizations. By 2025, around 1,000 rental and owner-occupied apartments will be built as part of various sub-projects that will meet a wide range of requirements, from family homes close to nature to student apartments, and will ensure a mixed and lively neighborhood life. One of the most architecturally imposing ensembles is BUWOG’s THE VIEW complex of three buildings, which was completed in June 2021.

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