Frankfurt’s “green lung”
The GreenBelt is Frankfurt’s “green lung”. Its 8,000 hectares cover around one-third of the surface area of the city and form a belt some 70 km long around the city. A particular feature of the GreenBelt is the variety of different landscapes and the rich array of plant and animal life. It reveals the wide range of Frankfurt landscapes and its orchard meadows, natural conservation areas, streams, farmland, parks, gardens, sports and leisure areas are a microcosm of the different landscapes in the Rhine-Main Region. The GreenBelt’s high-quality facilities and natural appeal make it one of the region’s more popular leisure areas.
Frankfurt’s municipal councillors laid the foundation for the GreenBelt when they decided, in 1991, to develop the area as a municipal green space and to place it under permanent protection. At the UN HABITAT II Conference in Istanbul in 1996, the United Nations paid tribute to the GreenBelt as a positive example of sustainable urban development. The medium-term goals are to give the GreenBelt improved access and better connections to inner-city green spaces and open areas as well as to the recreation areas in the region.
Environmental education in the GreenBelt
A landscape-related, forward-looking educational concept has been developed for Frankfurt’s GreenBelt. Learning points have been set up in the difference landscapes within the GreenBelt – on the former airfield in Bonames, at Heiligenstock and in the Lohrpark, with the StadtWaldHaus and the GreenBelt woodland school. The “Discover, explore and learn in Frankfurt’s GreenBelt” programme invites school classes, groups of children and families to find out what nature has to offer in the GreenBelt.
Plugging the gap
East of the city centre, a new green link route is to be built between the Ostpark and the banks of the Main. On foot or by bicycle, the trip is currently not a pleasant experience. Apart from the traffic noise and the stench of exhaust fumes, the Hanauer Landstrasse is a particularly problematic obstacle and there is far too little greenery.
A green link will turn this “landscape gap” into a “landscape bridge”. A site owned by Deutsche Bahn near the Ostbahnhof will be part of the route, allowing a green link to be formed from the Ostpark to the new Hafenpark and the banks of the Main. Following Ostparkstrasse – if possible on the level of the disused most northerly platform (level +1) – the route will lead to Danziger Platz (Ostbahnhof) and then, avoiding the busy roads, across a handy bridge over the Hanauer Landstrasse with splendid views, and onwards in the direction of the Main.
The first section of the green link has been completed in 2015 with the construction of the new European Central Bank building. It´s name ist Holzmann-Park and it connects the Hanauer Landstraße with the Main. The second section can only be opened when the northern S-Bahn route has been built. The local residents are already taking a great interest in the project. A survey has been conducted and an information vehicle stood in the area for several months, attracting a large number of enquirers.
All about the GreenBelt
A wealth of further information about landscapes and places to visit in the GreenBelt, current events and “Discover, explore and learn” facilities for children and families can be viewed at www.frankfurt.de.
The GreenBelt leisure map and a number of leaflets and brochures about the GreenBelt can be obtained from the Environment Department. Click here for a list.