Harbour park with pier in Brandenburg

Senftenberg town harbour

Stadthafen Senftenberg © Andreas Franke
Stadthafen Senftenberg © Hanns Joosten
Stadthafen Senftenberg © Hanns Joosten
Stadthafen Senftenberg © Hanns Joosten

In developing the Lusatia region’s lake district, the main question is how the landscape potentials provided by the newly emerging waterscape can be made attractive for tourists. The construction of Senftenberg’s town harbour could become a key regional project in the area of infrastructure measures that could strengthen the relationship between the town itself and the landscape left behind by open cast mining.

Not only a technically functioning harbour with mooring places, a slipway, and a boat fuelling station have been built, but a new destination for the residents of and visitors to the region has also been created. Senftenberg Lake was already flooded in the 1960s/70s. The environmentally unfriendly open cast mine was transformed into a landscaped body of water. This measure is seen as a showcase project of recultivation in the GDR and aimed from the beginning of its successive development to provide a recreational landscape very close to the town.

The task to develop Senftenberg town harbour gave rise to the issue of the future relationship between town and waterscape. The challenge and the task facing the town of Senftenberg and the IBA See (International Architecture Exhibition Lake) was to develop the harbour as an urban intervention and link between the town proper and the recreational landscape. After a realisation period of four years and one year of operation, it can be seen that this has actually been happening in a way that will have a positive impact in the future. One main factor of success has been the fact that the harbour as a ‘technical structure’ was understood from the very beginning as a Baukultur task. The harbour was to do more than just be a ‘functional harbour’.

The town harbour today acts as a connection between the town and the waterscape thanks to multi-dimensional utilisations. Those involved have succeeded, sooner than expected, in creating a place that has become an urban location where the citizens of Senftenberg and visitors to the region can enjoy a range of recreational activities. What is more, the infrastructure project has become a new symbolic landmark in a region that is constantly developing further as a tourist destination.

This project was presented as part of the 2015 Baukultur Workshops in Regensburg.

Completion 2013
Planning period realisation competition as part of IBA_see, 1st prize 2009, realisation of outdoor facilities 2011–2012, realisation of engineering works 2011–2013
Developer Zweckverband Lausitzer Seenland, Brandenburg
Architect / planner

bgmr Landschaftsarchitekten, Berlin, with ASTOC Architects and Planners, Cologne, and Ecosystem Saxonia, Dresden

Planning partners ifb frohloff, staffa kühl ecker (structural engineering of pier/gangways); Sauerzapfe Architekten (planning of pier/gangways); AbTiWa (planning and structural engineering of floating dock)
Size / area 18 ha
Building costs (gross) 11.5 M €
Uses Open space
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