Rosa-Luxemburg Garden, Paris: green corridor transformation.
The Rosa-Luxemburg Garden in the 18th arrondissement of Paris is an example of the urban renewal of a transformed abandoned space – a green corridor transformation.
It is an active railroad space transformed from wasteland to a semi-open green corridor. The abandoned warehouse of 9,500 square metres has become a public library, a 300-bed youth hostel, seminar rooms, design shop, grocery store, café, a fabrication lab, and a restaurant-bar, with a garden and water feature.
In 1926, a long, metal warehouse in art-deco style met the needs for parcel transportation by rail until it came to an abrupt halt in 2002. Halle Pajol constructed the complex and garden in 2014. The vision for Halle Pajol was to build a safe neighbourhood on an old railway site, embracing new technologies and renewable materials. The site’s power demands are met with the production of 1,988 solar panels covering 3,500 square metres. There is also a power pipe system for the garden water feature.
The garden – green corridor – has a pedestrian pathway and street furniture, with buffer zones to mitigate noise pollution.
The garden was named after Rosa Luxemburg (1871-1919), a Polish-German revolutionary and anti-war activist. Born in Poland, she became a German citizen in 1897 and settled in Berlin. She was assassinated in Berlin.
Poet Bertolt Brecht wrote a memorial poem in her honour in 1919, set to music:
Red Rosa now has vanished too,
And where she lies is hid from view.
She told the poor what life’s about,
And so, the rich have rubbed her out.
May she rest in peace.