Berlin- Building to Bridge the Gap - Berlin Building To...

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Berlin: Building To Bridge The Gap Houser, Dave G.. German Life. La Vale:Nov 30, 1996. Vol. 3, Iss. 3, p. 20 Abstract (Summary) Owing, perhaps, to its historic connection with the theater, Berlin has a flair for masking tumult as a top-billing attraction. Press release from Berlin Tourism Marketing GmbH tout the city as "Europe's largest construction site" and Burgermeister Eberhard has gotten into the act as well, proclaiming that "Berlin is the center for a new form of tourism - buildingsite tourism." The mayor points out that "visitors have the unique opportunity to form an impression of Berlin's future appearance which is now taking shape from its building sites." There's another historic but long-neglected neighborhood in the eastside's Mitte (center) district that's coming to life as we know it. It was here that a large and prosperous Jewish community developed in the 17th century, flourishing until the Nazi pogroms of the 1930s. Badly damaged by Allied bombs during World War II, the old Judisches Viertel (Jewish Quarter) received minimal attention by the East German regime and much of the area deteriorated into slumdom - a warren roamed by vagrants, pushers, pimps, and prostitutes. Oranienburgerstrasse was at the very heart of this run-down tenderloin district, but today it's the trendy epicenter of eastern Berlin's burgeoning alternative art and nightlife scene. Berlin's architectural adventure may center on the eastside, but new works are taking shape in City West as well. There's a mammoth new department store by Peek+Cloppenburg on Tauentzienstrasse with a folded glass facade designed to make the impression of a fabric curtain. Behold an even more exotic design by noted British architect Nicholas Grimshaw at the Ludwig Erhard Haus. Already dubbed the "glass armadillo," this high-arched DM 250 million ($168 million) structure on Hardenburgstrasse is destined to serve as the central meeting point of Berlin's business community. A completed section already houses the Stock Exchange, and the Berlin Chamber of Commerce & Industry (IHK) and the Association of Berlin Merchants and Industries (VBKI) are scheduled to take up residence in Grimshaw's armadillo next spring. Full Text (2246 words) Copyright German Life Nov 30, 1996 BERLIN: Building To Bridge The Gap. You would think that a city its sky-line shrouded by cranes and streets ripped as under by construction would suffer a severe slump in tourism. In Berlin's case you would be wrong.
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The welcome mat remains out as the massive amalgamation of East and West Berlin gathers pace. Visitors, in fact, are coming in droves to witness firsthand the making of a new metropolis. Owing, perhaps, to its historic connection with the theater, Berlin has a flair for masking tumult as a top-billing attraction. Press release from Berlin Tourism Marketing GmbH tout the city as "Europe's largest construction site" and Burgermeister Eberhard has gotten into the act as well, proclaiming that "Berlin is the center for a new form of tourism - buildingsite tourism." The mayor points out that "visitors have the unique
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