At the beginning of October, 20 members of our EX-TRA team congregated in Munich for our first bi-annual meeting, marking the first 6 months of the EX-TRA project. Over two days, progress on the project was presented and we took part in workshops to explore how the different working packages within the project could be linked and carried out across the 6 participating cities. As part of our meeting, we also visited a selection of street experiments across the city:
Westenriederstraße Summer Street
Westenriederstraße is a street in Munich’s historic city centre, that runs down one side of the busy Viktualienmarkt food market. In the Summer of 2020, Westenriederstraße was appointed as a ‘Summer Street’, where pedestrians are temporarily given priority over cars. On the Westenriederstraße, planters and traffic signs are used to ensure traffic calming. The summer streets program started in 2019 with only two streets. During the pandemic, the city offered more than 10 summers streets and play streets which were welcome by citizens and the program will be repeated in 2022! In the upcoming year citizens can request and propose a summer street through the district committee.
Piazza Zenetti, located in the Isarvorstadt area of Munich, is an example of how a street experiment can be used to repurpose parking spaces. Formerly used as 20 car parking spots, between June and November 2019 this part of the street was transformed for two new functions: space for shared (e-)mobility, and a neighbourhood square where the community can meet. Straddling either side of Zennetiplatz, on one side you can find an open square with new public furniture, planters, and other communal features such as a book exchange and a notice board. On the other side of the street, you will find a docking point for MVG rental bikes, and an electric vehicle charging station. There are plans from the city to remove this space and create a permanent public space.
The Sendlingerstraße is a residential and commercial street in Munich city centre, previously used as a street for cars and parking. In June 2016, following decades about whether to pedestrianise the street, it was agreed that the street would become a pedestrian zone for one year - as an experiment. During the experiment different events were organized to encourage people to used the street in more creative ways. The experiment got positive feedback, despite of some issues with the delivery to the shops and was transformed into a permanent pedestrian zone. Now, in 2021, the experiment is still in place, as a permanent pedestrian zone. As well as the additional space for pedestrians to stroll down the centre of the street, new public furniture has also been provided.