Chemnitz is in transition – this is not new for the city since the residents are, so to speak, “transformation experts“. Until the 1930s Chemnitz was an economically aspiring city with 360,000 inhabitants and seen as the “Manchester of Saxony“. During the GDR period, Chemnitz was transformed into the “socialist model city“of East Germany. Then after the reunification of Germany in 1989, the city repeatedly transformed and built a new city center for the third time in seventy years. After the racist attacks and right-wing populism events in August 2018 the urgent need for social and structural transformation in the city became inevitable. But for a successful change it needs the involvement of the citizens to create a new shared social identity.
Together with Zebralog, TSPA conducted a participatory process with different formats for diverse target groups to develop a spatial vision for Chemnitz. By mapping the results of the participation and formulating six overarching goals, we illustrated a citywide vision that defines the existing qualities and areas for future action for development. The goal and aspiration of the vision is to bring together the perspectives of urban society, administration and politics on the goals and guidelines of Chemnitz’s urban development. It thus mediates between the diverse wishes and lifeworlds of the citizens, the peculiarities of the city and global processes of change, to which answers must be found together.
The exemplary vision plan for Chemnitz functions as a compass that helps promote innovation in the city and shape the necessary change. The vision for the year 2040 consists of six strategic goals to guide urban development over the next twenty years, as well as selected tools and projects that will make a particular contribution to achieving each goal.
- Goal 1: Productive and connected
- Goal 2: Urban
- Goal 3: Discussed and designed together
- Goal 4: Conscious and healthy
- Goal 5: Renewable and green
- Goal 6: Sustainably mobile
As a motivating vision for the future, the mission statement shows which topics will be important in Chemnitz in the next twenty years, which goals the city has set for itself, and which adjustments need to be made in order to advance the strategic development of the city. The city-wide strategic vision serves as a basis for the creation of future urban development concepts in Chemnitz.