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A new city DNA for Ludwigshafen to turn Germany’s ugliest city into the coolest city

ASSELMEYER ARCHITEKT Hamburg: Identity-creating architecture for Ludwigshafen – “Beta solutions for big change with little money”.

Identity architecture and beta solutions for LudwigshafenHamburg/Ludwigshafen/New York: Identity-creating architecture for Ludwigshafen – the model can be New York! At least when it comes to realizing visions and change through innovation. Nevertheless, only so-called beta solutions are necessary for this, so as not to further strain the already strained municipal budget. This critical creative input comes from an architect from Hamburg, who had read about the urban planning problems of what has been dubbed “Germany’s ugliest city” via the media and is amazed by the low level of pride in their homeland among its residents and city officials.

“Ludwigshafen has every reason to be proud of its location on the Rhine. Nevertheless, the residents tend to see themselves as Oggersheimers, Friesenheimers, Mundenheimers, etc., rather than as actual Ludwigshafeners. Through targeted beta solutions and creative establishment of identity architecture, this image dilemma could be solved in the next few years without any problems,” says Hamburg-based architect Dipl.-Ing. Justus Asselmeyer, who naturally includes his experiences and adventures from his former adopted home of New York in his analysis and observations.

“Germany’s Ugliest City” can become “Germany’s Coolest City

When even tourist tours of “Germany’s Ugliest City” are offered, even more so by people who share responsibility for the city’s architectural concerns, then something is going wrong. “My research has shown that, of course, as in any city, there are problems and there were also clear planning errors in urban development. These include the design of the city center, the problem of elevated roads, the main train station, the City Hall Center, the Walzmühle and several more. But these problems must be actively addressed and creatively solved. And do it boldly, with a vision for the future and not looking to the past,” Asselmeyer said.

Vision: Ludwigshafen opens the world’s longest pedestrian and bicycle elevated highway

“New York also doesn’t have a true downtown, but five distinct boroughs. And New York also had an elevated highway that lay fallow for many years,” the architect explains. “The demolition permit was already in place, but the demolition was prevented and what was once a dilapidated, crumbling structure became one of the busiest downtown pedestrian walkways in the world – the New York Highline. The Highline became a real future-oriented highlight of the city and for its residents. That’s what I’d like to see in Ludwigshafen, too.”

“A pedestrian and bicycle elevated highway like this would also be cool for Ludwigshafen and its image. There are many similarities between New York and Ludwigshafen that could be taken as a model,” says Asselmeyer.
1. Ludwigshafen and New York – both are cities with migrants
2. Ludwigshafen and new york – both are cities by the water
3. Ludwigshafen and new york – both are cities with elevated highway
4. Ludwigshafen and new york – both are cities without a city center

Wish for the redesign: “Not simply architecture for a city, but identity architecture for Ludwigshafen”.

The current architectural reference book on the subject, “New Architecture: Heidelberg, Ludwigshafen, Mannheim,” shows the architectural reality in Ludwigshafen. While there are over 30 residential projects, some of which are very good, there is virtually no relevant new urban planning project by the public. According to Asselmeyer, that needs to change. With cheap beta solutions and innovation, which this cool city and its inhabitants have enough to offer. For the architect, however, people and the residents of Ludwigshafen must always be at the center of all future planning. Ludwigshafen must express the pride of its inhabitants and the potential of trade and industry in its self-presentation and architecture! Ludwigshafen can become the city of enablers.

Identity architecture for Ludwigshafen

“My demands to the city leaders: an analysis of the small and large potentials of this city and its people to enable the elaboration of a new forward-looking city DNA. After that, “Beta Solutions for Ludwigshafen” will step by step turn Germany’s ugliest city into the new and beautiful Ludwigshafen, of which its inhabitants can be justly proud, through innovative spirit and creative human identity architecture,” says architect Asselmeyer, who, with over 20 years of international experience in architecture but also in urban architecture & public space design, has an analyzing and open view of Ludwigshafen’s current problems.

Information on the city of Ludwigshafen at:


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