Centuries-Old Tradition and Timeless Design at Garden Shows

With its impressive Bavarian lion and lighthouse, the harbour entrance at Lindau (Germany) is one of Lake Constance’s tourist highlights. Visitors come here to stroll along the lakeside promenade, sit at the pavement cafés and take in the views or attend one of the many events. The old town centre is located on a neighbouring island, and its historic façades, lively squares and flowering plants make it a particularly picturesque and colourful place.

In 2021, Lindau hosted the Bavarian State Garden Show. A regional horticultural exhibition incorporating various themes such as landscape architecture, the event is the smaller counterpart of the biennial German National Garden Show or BUGA (Bundesgartenschau) and the decennial International Horticultural Show (IGA). Garden shows have been a German tradition for centuries. The country’s first general exhibition with international participation took place in Erfurt in 1865.

For the 2021 garden show in Lindau, the city council decided to implement a uniform redesign of the cityscape. An exciting new beach park was created, and green spaces and homes providing sweeping views of spectacular Lake Constance and the Alps replaced an extensive parking area.

The city’s public spaces were also redesigned with due consideration for the existing environment. Mobile landscaping elements played a key part, and in addition to the mobile design concept, other guiding principles included durability and simple aesthetics that blend with the historic surroundings.

The famous Inselhalle, which has been home to the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings for many decades, is located on the northern edge of the historic city centre. The conference centre was recently modernised by Auer Weber Architects and includes a new multi-storey car park with a CorTen steel façade. Globe tree planters and oval Mobile Green Isles made from the same CorTen steel material decorate the entrance plaza to both structures: carefully thought-out detailing to further emphasise the uniform cityscape.

More recently, 64 CorTen steel Shrubtubs have been placed around Lindau. The warm tones of the weathered steel subtly match the colourful splendour of the city without being obtrusive. This material is low maintenance and durable. Local business owners have been involved in distributing the tree planters around the area – some are so enthusiastic that they now want to replace their own planters with Shrubtubs. This will serve to further unify the urban landscape.

Along the harbour promenade, the city opted for larger mobile plant modules. Oval Mobile Green Isles with integrated seating and matching CorTen steel finish were again chosen and placed on the existing paved areas. When there is an event, these mobile modules can easily be moved by a forklift truck to add temporary greenery elsewhere.

Mobile Green Isles with their rich foliage now make the promenade area even more pleasant and inviting. The existing and much-loved palm trees that previously stood in concrete containers along the promenade were replanted in raised tree tubs from the same range. The palm trees give height to the landscape and accentuate the isles. Mobile Green Isles are an attractive focal point and provide accessible seating and an alternative to the pavement cafés.

The BUGA is internationally renowned and takes place every two years during the summer months. Usually restricted to one city, in 2015, the show was spread over five sites and two federal states for the first time: the BUGA in the Havel region. At one of the locations in Havelberg, Streetlife installed a long Crossline Bridge that connected the two exhibition areas on either side of the Flethe valley.

The garden show has long finished, but the new landscaping developed in Lindau for residents and visitors remains intact. A prime example of how investing in timeless design and superior quality adds lasting value to the urban landscape.

Published on July 6, 2023

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