09.05.2023 | Uferhallen e.V. - Open Letter: WE ARE BERLIN ART AND CULTURE SCENE
The bbk berlin supports the artists in the Uferhallen. Please sign the open letter:
"After a five-year marathon of tough negotiations – combined with ups and downs, hopes and disappointments – the cultural location Uferhallen is facing a sudden end. If no immediate solution is found, the local artists fear the first layoffs at the end of May.
We, the Uferhallen e.V., represent the interests of the artists and tenants on site. We turn to you with the urgent request to support our demands and to ensure the greatest possible publicity. At stake is a production site that has grown for 15 years and a unique space for cultural exchange on the landmarked grounds of the former BVG depot in the center of the city.
The Uferhallen are an integral part of Berlin’s cultural scene and urban society. In addition to artist studios and studio apartments, they also house dance and rehearsal rooms, sound studios, a concert hall and an exhibition hall, workshops, gastronomy and numerous event spaces. The variety ranges from classical music (Pianosalon Christophori) to experimental performative formats, annual open studios, and internationally curated exhibitions throughout the premises. Among other things, the Uferhallen hosted the Berlin Art Week Garden 2022, participated in the Kultursommerfestival, and hosted several events and projects in cooperation with the n.b.k. (Neuer Berliner Kunstverein).
In the fall of 2021, the district office Mitte, the Senate and the owners of the Uferhallen site announced to save the cultural location in a Lette of Intent. A so-called development plan procedure was decided by the district office Mitte with the aim of securing the retention of all resident tenants, creating a special area for culture, and allowing the owner, Marema GmbH (a corporate network of the Samwer brothers), a construction project in appropriate relation to the surrounding. The district Mitte called for a citizen participation process in June 2022. When the negotiations showed signs of a successful agreement, the owners unilaterally terminated the planed procedure in January 2023 – allegedly for economic reasons. This has created an unsettled and dangerous situation for the tenants of the Uferhallen and for us as an association.
All negotiations up to now are meaningless: terminations are a threat; the planned general lease contract for 30 years is obsolete. Many tenants will lose their workspaces, because a total of three construction projects are to be built on the site from January 2024. These projects were promised to the owner – anticipating the now canceled development plan. Currently, it is completely unclear whether the tenants affected will be provided with the space they need to move.
That is why we are addressing everyone for whom culture in Berlin is vital. We call for the Uferhallen to be preserved with all available means. The Senate for Culture and Europe and the district office of Mitte have supported us to the best of their abilities so far, especially in the context of the development plan procedure. The negotiations between the owners, the Senate and the district, which were held in the context of the development plan procedure, must be continued without delay.
We demand a contract between the owners, the tenants and the state of Berlin. This contract must secure the studios and their affordability in the long term. The threatened terminations must be prevented. This is the only way to preserve Uferhallen as a cultural location. A loss would be irretrievable for this city."
Support the Uferhallen with your presence and come to the exhibition from 11 May:
EXAMPLES TO FOLLOW!
[expeditions¹] explorations in aesthetics and sustainability
will end at the very place where it started 13 years ago.
May 11th 2023 Opening
From 6 pm Performance-Installation Néle Azevedo
7 pm Greeting and nice short speeches
9 pm Dance performance David Brandstätter
May 12th – July 16th 2023
Opening hours Tuesday – Sunday
12 am – 8 pm on days without dialog program
12 am – 10 pm on days with dialogue program
TUE-WED-THU 6-6:30 pm Dance/music/speech rehearsal pieces as solo or duo