Transformation of the Rems Valley and Rems – from the source of the river to its mouth
In 2019 the first intercommunal garden show took place in Baden-Württemberg, and 16 municipalities used the event to develop in a sustainable and contemporary way more than 80 km of the Rems Valley from the source of the Rems river to the point where it flows into the Neckar river. The parts of Waiblingen most affected by the garden show were the open space areas close to the city centre in the Talaue floodplain along the banks of the Rems. The redesign of the Talaue was not only carried out for the six-months of the garden show, but was instead the result of a fundamental review of existing park structures with regard to their usage in the coming decades. There were a number of temporary interventions, but the new design was not a result of a general planning concept. Existing potentials were strengthened and the pedestrian circulation system within the parks and access to local recreational facilities were improved.
The so-called Kunstlichtung is now the new heart of the open space in the Talaue floodplain. The large meadow is framed by fruit trees and corresponds thematically and formally with the city’s Galerie Stihl art gallery. A small wooded area was planted to create a clearing of approx. 1400 square metres that represents the negative imprint of the gallery’s footprint, and which now serves as a place for public art and small events. The grove was deliberately designed to be experienced as an artificial object and is located so that it would be somewhat separate from the surrounding path system. A 60cm-wide, on-grade concrete band marks the transition from the grove to the clearing, further emphasising the project’s design vocabulary. The 240 trees used were planted in rows and the branches were pruned up to a height of three metres to allow for easy access. Salix alba ‘Belders’ and Salix alba ‘Liempde’ (white willow) were selected, as they are typical flood plain trees and can cope well with the environmental conditions that occur there. Their narrow-crowned habit also accentuates the desired image, and the light shade their crowns provide is comfortable to sit and relax in. A supply of electricity and water was deliberately omitted in the floodplain in order to prevent more noise-intensive events from being held there.
Remstal GARDEN SHOW 2019
CLIENT: The Town of Waiblingen
TIME FRAME: 2015 – 06/2019
CONSTRUCTION COSTS: approx. 4 million euros
SIZE: Central area: 2 hectares, Talauenpark total: 30 hectares
PROJECT: Service Phases 1–9
Photography: Roman Mensing www.romanmensing.de