Schwarzatal, Resiliente Region

A valley blossoms

Schwarzatal is one of the oldest nature reserves in Germany and was particularly popular as a holiday destination in the former East Germany. However, after the political changes, the economy stagnated and many people left the region. Tourism largely came to a standstill. Yet this cultural landscape is rich in architecture, shaped by the former summer resorts, as well as in natural experiences and history. How can this treasure become a popular holiday region again, a livable home for the population, while also addressing the challenges of climate change threatening the valley?

Burkhardt Kolbmüller auf dem NaturKulturHof Bechstedt
In 2011, the Zukunftswerkstatt Schwarzatal initiative was founded as a network of dedicated citizens to set positive signals in the region after years of decline. Since 2017, Zukunftswerkstatt has been an association.
Wanderschilder Schwarzatal_Foto Thomas Müller
Responding to the call for projects ›Zukunft StadtLand!‹ by IBA Thuringia, the initiative applied in 2014 with the project idea ›Resilientes Schwarzatal‹, long before the term resilience became widely known.
Schwarzatal Blick auf Schwarzburg_Foto Thomas Müller
Several IBA projects have emerged from the ›Resilientes Schwarzatal‹ candidate, strengthening the civil society forces of the region and bringing new actors into the valley. The project participants also hope to strengthen democracy and social cohesion. In addition, sustainable infrastructure and building practices require a fundamental rethink of valley development. Existing resources should be conserved and reused, particularly the many empty houses in the region.

The IBA projects in the valley focus on a cross-municipal, sustainable landscape with pilot projects such as Wasserfrische, Schloss Schwarzburg — the historic heart of the region as a place of democracy —, the Sommerfrische architecture with Haus Bräutigam and Haus Döschnitz and the Bahnhof Rottenbach in Königsee as the gateway to Schwarzatal. The annual Tag der Sommerfrische uand the regional conference ›Schwarzburger Gespräche‹ present and discuss these impulses in a public and effective way.

IBA Projektgrafik Schwarzatal




IBA Project Manager

Ulrike Rothe


Gespräch mit Ines Kinsky_IBA Magazin 2022.pdf [pdf]


Schwarzburger Gespräche zu Klimakrise und Energieverknappung
Schwarzburger Gespräche zu klimaneutralem regionalen Bauen
Thüringer Verdienstorden für Dr. Burkhardt Kolbmüller, Zukunftswerkstatt Schwarzatal e.V.
Pilotprojekt ›Wasserfrische‹
Schwarzburger Gespräche ›Sozialen Zusammenhalt gestalten!‹
Beteiligungsverfahren zur ›Waldfrische‹
Schwarzburger Gespräche zum ›Zukunftsfähigen Landschaftsbild Schwarzatal‹
Kooperatives Werkstattverfahren ›Zukunftsfähiges Landschaftsbild Schwarzatal‹ gestartet
Resilientes Schwarzatal Teil des Bundesprogramms MORO
Schwarzburger Gespräche zu Kulturgut, Lebensraum und Zukunftskapital
StadtLand Gespräch in Bechstedt
Nominierung zum IBA Kandidat und erstes Schwarzburger Gespräch

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