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Proclamation of the Principles of Urban Planning by the Council of Ministers of the German Democratic Republic (September 15, 1950)

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12/ Transforming the city into a garden is impossible. Of course, adequate greenery must be provided. But this principle must not be violated: life in the city is more urban, life on the edge or outside of the city is more rural.

13/ Multi-story construction is much more efficient than single- or two-storey construction. It is also in keeping with the character of large cities.

14/ Urban planning is the foundation of architectural design. The central question in the urban planning and architectural design of a city is the creation of a unique, individual face for the city. The architecture must be democratic in content and national in form. To that end, architecture draws on the experience of the people as embodied in the progressive traditions of the past.

15/ No abstract scheme exists for city planning or architectural design. What is decisive is to bring together the most essential factors and demands of life.

16/ Designs must be prepared for the planning and building of certain city sections and for squares and main streets with adjoining housing blocks. These designs must be suitable for implementation, and they should be drafted at the same time that work proceeds on the city plan and in accordance with it.

Source: Ministerialblatt der Deutschen Demokratischen Republik, no. 25, September 15, 1950, p. 153; reprinted in Dierk Hoffmann and Michael Schwartz, eds., Geschichte der Sozialpolitik in Deutschland seit 1945. Bd. 8: 1949-1961: Deutsche Demokratische Republik. Im Zeichen des Aufbaus des Sozialismus [History of Social Policy in Germany since 1945, Vol. 8: 1949-1961: German Democratic Republic. Under the Sign of the Build Up of Socialism]. Baden-Baden: Nomos, 2004, no. 8/40.

Translation: Thomas Dunlap

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