Seymour Gris: The anti-Mediaspree hypocrites

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Rent control

"If the new Mediaspree flats get rented or bought, it will undoubtably have a positive impact on the rental market." Yes Seymour, because everybody knows that rental prices always go down when yuppies are buying/renting at outrageous prices... and yes, I am rolling my eyes at you!

The only definite solution to sharp rent increases is rent control. Because as you yourself point out, overbuilding is a temporary-fix solution: once the market catches up, prices go up. After that the only thing which can ease the pressure is rent control.

If it means that rent prices stay down, then I have no problem with yuppies moving out into the no man's land beyond the Ringbahn, like I live along with many Berliners. If nothing else it would force them to integrate a bit, and to realize that money can't buy them a private island in the middle of someone else's city.

Alicia more than 5 years ago

save berlin

Yes, Exberliner did organise an event known a Save Berlin - which simply explored alternatives for the future of the city. It wasn't a blanket condemnation of Mediaspree or development per se. Plus, Exberliner is isn't a thinktank with a strict party line on things. That said, my "primary school" idea that construction of more flats around Mediaspree will ease pressure on the Berlin housing market is pretty sound. In the early 1990s Berlin had a housing shortage and prices shot up rapidly. By the end of that decade prices had dropped considerably, thanks to overbuilding. Now the market has caught up. We urgently need more flats in central areas, if we want prices to remain somewhat stable. If the new Mediaspree flats get rented or bought, it will undoubtably have a positive impact on the rental market. As for "yuppies" ruining everything: it's a facile argument based on the same sort of elitism that ruled the Bar 25 door policy. Reverse snobbery doesn't really help Berlin in any way.

Seymour more than 5 years ago

mediaspree

Hold on a minute, didn't the Exberliner once organize a thing called Save Berlin or somthing like that, which was against the whole gentrification of Berlin and fighting to prevent things like media Spree? It seems that opinions change with the wind for you guys or is it a case that this bunch of yuppies are being priced out of the market.
Personally I am in favor of the Media Spree and not for a dumb ass idea like it could reduce my rent, but maybe just maybe it will bring some jobs to the city, real jobs, not just companies that survive on the basis of cheap praktikum/internship labor. Then maybe people will be able to afford the rising rents.

Robert B. more than 5 years ago

poor reasons there

Go for Media Spree to free your neighborhood. Nice idea, where's it from? Primary school?

In that case gentrification would mean, the manager/developer/yuppie scum's are coming to that part of the city cause nowhere else would be some nice little place for them.

But as we all know they are coming cause the people made an area interesting and now they're no more needed /welcome cause with the manager/developer/yuppie scum's you could earn much more money. The not so manager/developer/yuppie scum's are leaving, some other parts of the city are going to be interesting and the game starts anew. Three days ago Mitte, then Prenzauler Berg, now Kreuzberg-Friedrichshain tomorrow north Neukölln.

Of course, it isn't a Berlin problem at all and I'm far away to be a commie, but as long we have this unbridled capitalism it will be always the same.

H more than 5 years ago

spoilt for choice

Going slightly off topic here: We CAN actually still enjoy dirt-cheap coal heated flats with showers in the kitchen in Berlin. Problem is, people don't want 'em! People's expectations of accom here changed due to the renovation craze of the past 20 years. Check out the 100s of unrenovated flats on immowelt. A fair few still going at 90s prices, but most people don't want them. Also prob because at some point they'll be renovated too, which means they aren't a good long-term prospect. But also because people WANT places which aren't boho (=coal stoves, unpainted, old linoleum, exposed pipes, no pimped-up parquet floors etc). But if people want that here, they CAN still get it. People should stop whingeing and be glad that they still have so many options here. And stop being such damn snobs about areas outside hipster zones.
Mediaspree is still a rotten idea tho, yuppie condos or no.

marie more than 5 years ago

"in the hands of the public"?

klav,

are you serious?

the spree is and was nowhere close to "in the hands of the public"!

you can walk along more of the thames riverside (with all of its corporate architectural splendour) than you can along the spree.

as much as I must protest the shutting of clubs to pave the way for the corporate death hubs, I certainly never saw bar25 inviting pedestrians off the street to walk on their patch of spree riverside land.

in fact, if anything, they made it more difficult to nigh on impossible for joe public to enjoy "their" riverside.

having said that, I don't see the author's point either. if at all, the increasing hordes of yuppies flocking to be as near their new workplace as possible will push up the prices of rent and finally give the scandinavian real estate mafia the very dividends they were speculating on making…

tranzmitta more than 5 years ago

mediaspree has nothing to do with it

Did you seriously just argue in favor of Mediaspree based on the idea that massive luxury and corporate developments there _might_ ease the rents in the rest of the city? The "might" there is telling--you obviously don't even believe it yourself.

The only way that gentrification and rising rents can be mitigated is through boring and sober political policy: rent controls and tenancy rights. The construction of Mediaspree has nothing to do with either, but the resistance to it might.

David more than 5 years ago

It's not about lifestyle

Among other things, it's about keeping the riverside in the hands of the public. I wonder what is hypocritical about that.

klav more than 5 years ago

Or not..

First off, I'm neither 100% anti or pro mediaspree. I do however believe in a balance between conserving what Berlin has and new development - it is after all a city and cities grow and change.

I highly doubt that new apartments along the Spree are going to 'free-up' apartments/rents in Prenzlauer Berg or "Kreuz-koelln". There's a reason why people want to live in those areas and not say, Wilmersdorf. A new development would offer shiny new luxury apartments would however have no 'charm' that everyone seems to love and you just can't create that. If anything demand will probably remain the same.

Simon more than 5 years ago

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