NAUENER PLATZ IN BERLIN, GERMANY
The Nauener Platz in Berlin, Germany is a small urban park. It was redeveloped in 2009 together with the residents, by means of a collaborative soundscape approach. It included the development of a cohesive new design for a neglected space, based on a mixed methods approach, combining different soundscape elements like the implementation of audio islands. The soundscape project was a module of the project “Nauener Platz – Remodeling for Young and Old” within the research program “Experimental Housing and Urban Development (ExWoSt)” .
In the audio example you can hear birds chirping – the sound playback of one of the audio islands activated by pushing a button.
By means of information gathered through recordings and various local expert dialogues, a number of strategies were developed to alter the soundscape of Nauener Platz for the benefit of the people involved. For example, a gabion wall was installed along the edges of the playground, a lighting scheme was introduced throughout the park for nighttime visibility and audio islands in the form of benches and immersive ring-shaped seats were installed throughout the park, offering spots to acoustically disengage from the nearby traffic noise and attract attention to pleasant sounds. The sound playback can be individually activated. The implemented sounds were determined together with local experts [2, 3].
Since the implementation of the intervention, Nauener Platz has been more frequently used by residents and increasingly by families with children. Moreover, the regular visitors of Nauener Platz reported that the park is perceived as safer and more pleasant, especially due to the sound playback .
 Schulte‐Fortkamp, B., Volz, R., & Jakob, A. (2008). Using the soundscape approach to develop a public space in Berlin ‐ perception and evaluation. The Journal Of The Acoustical Society Of America, 123(5), 3808.
 Schulte-Fortkamp, B., & Jordan, P. (2016). When soundscape meets architecture. Noise Mapping, 3(1), 216-231.
 Acloque, V., Schulte-Fortkamp, B. (2011). Validation of the psychoacoustic infrastructure of a public space in Berlin, based on the concept of soundscape. Fortschritte der Akustik, 37. Deutsche Jahrestagung für Akustik, 21.-24. March 2011, Düsseldorf.
Photos, video, audio: André Fiebig
Entry submitted by: André Fiebig