- The Rheinbach-case study - Reshaping the economic structure and urban characteristic of a 26.000 inhabitant city by the initiation of a creative cluster    click here to open paper content124 kb
by    Pfirrmann, Martin | martin@mynewworld.de   click here to send an email to the auther(s) of this paper
Short Outline
This case-study presents the example of Rheinbach, a small city in the Bonn City Region, Germany. Within less than 15 years, Rheinbach initiated and established a creative cluster including a school of applied sciences, a start-up center and more.
Back in 1991, the German Parliament decided to move the capital with the majority of its ministries and federal agencies from Bonn to Berlin. Overnight, the Bonn city region (1 Mio. inhabitants) was confronted with a situation where it had to do develop new perspectives for it's future development.

A strategic alliance was signed by the 28 affected municipalities only a few days after the official resolution, and within a couple of weeks, a group of professionals from various fields shaped the strategies for the region. This is almost 15 years ago and since then the region did undergo fundamental structural changes.

One positive example is the transformation of the municipality of Rheinbach, located less than 20 km south-west from the regions capital centre Bonn. Until 1991, Rheinbach was one of the many bedroom-cities, characterised by a huge outwards-commuter traffic and few employment opportunities. Today, the city's characteristic changed completely. The development strategies for the region made it possible to install or better to develop a creative cluster in this municipality to strengthen the decentralised structures of the entire region. In this relation, a new school for applied sciences was installed here, together with a centre for innovation and university start-up spin-offs. In addition new areas for commercial activities and residential use have been developed to complete the local package of development efforts.

This exceptional development is based upon a broad regional co-operation on the professional planning level, common regional development perspectives and strategies as well as on a initial capital flow from the federal government to encourage the structural change in the Bonn city region. On the local level the consequent implementation of several development steps can serve as a role model.

The full paper will present a detailed view on the circumstances and strategies that made this development possible, especially focussing on the role of planning that was involved.
creative cluster bonn city region rheinbach
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