The land is situated between Köpenicker Straße and the Spree river, it is boxed between a demolition and re-development site (previously the North German ice factory AG) and the Verdi (Vereinte Dienstleistungsgewerkschaft Bundesvorstand, Independent trade Union) office building. The land has varying topography and overgrowth, littered with a mixture of dumped and drifting materials. A large section of the land closest to the studios is covered with concrete, my assumption is that this was the former foundations of of built structures made apparent by the concrete. A section of the land closest to the river of the land is covered with imported sand (which in the past was perhaps a feature of a beach bar). There is built platform and railing which is often used by people to view the river, in contrast to the the rest of the wasteland this area feels more designed. In the summer the site is viewed by passing tourist tour boats on an 2/3 hourly basis in the daytime. The land is primarily frequented by dog walkers and local residents. This land has significant traffic and activity, I have not yet spent time on this site without the presence of one other person.
‘The space behind the Köpi studios’
The Wasteland behind Köpenicker Straße studios next to Kopi squat, opposite Radialsystem V next to the Spree river.
Köpenicker Straße 36/38, Berlin, Germany
HOCHTIEF Aktiengesellschaft is the seventh-largest construction company in the world and market leader in Germany.
It is assumed that the land will be developed as part of the 'Mediaspree' property investment project in the coming years, although as yet no specific plans have been made public.
'Mediaspree' is one of the largest property investment projects in Berlin. It aims to establish telecommunication and media companies along a section of the banks of the river Spree as well as to implement an urban renewal of the surrounding area. So far, for the most part, unused or temporarily-occupied real estate is to be converted into office buildings, lofts, hotels, and other new structures.'
'The project extends along a 3.7 km (2.3 mi) long, 180-hectare (444 acre) space on both sides of the Spree riverfront, on the borders of four districts: Mitte, Friedrichshain, Kreuzberg und Alt-Treptow. It is bordered to the west by Jannowitzbrücke (de), to the north by the railway tracks of the Berlin S-Bahn (rapid transit trains), to the east by Elsenbrücke (de), and to the south by two streets (Schlesischen Straße and Köpenicker Straße). The Spree is about 150 m (492 ft) wide along this section and the riverfront runs relatively straight. The river is cross-cut by three bridges within the Mediaspree zone: Michaelbrücke (de), Schillingbrücke (de) and Oberbaumbrücke.'
Pre 90's this was the site of a small construction operations and a Timber yard- the hardware stores Kapella had a branch here. The site has been previously owned by A.L.E.X. Bau GmbH and now it it owned by Hochtief.
The land is accessible by foot and car from the side of Köpenicker studios, although it is relatively hidden from the average passerby. Recently it has become possible to access the land from the bridge via the river walkway, it is unclear whether this access was made possible through official jurisdiction or ad-hoc intervention.
Either side of the land is surrounded by temporary Harris fencing defining the territory of the construction development and the Verdi building . On the side of the Verdi building is a man made grass bank (almost covering the entire length of the land) at ground level this hides the wasteland from the Verdi offices and the Verdi offices from the wasteland. At the foot of the fencing bordering the Verdi offices is coiled razor wire which has little function beyond collecting litter, as the site is easily assessable at both in the day and at night.
A small section of the land is used by residents of the køpi squat as a vegetable garden, to walk dogs and fix vehicles.
This site is often frequented for dog walking relaxing, picnicking and smoking during the summer (in particular the area closest to the river and the imported beach.) On occasion in the summer months people camp on the site. Recently the site has been subjected to all night raves.