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Real Estate Workshop 2012

B|ORDERS in Motion – Participants of the Real Estate Workshop in the Wall Museum

Where can the permeability of borders be better explained than in the Wall Museum at Checkpoint Charlie in Berlin? Directly at the first exhibit - a rebuilded VW Beetle - you begin to sense what hardships the people have gone through in order to overcome the Wall. Under the rebuilded bonnet there was not much space and one had namely to hold out possibly for several hours in this narrow hiding place. Other refugees had, on the contrary, more "space" and escaped in a home-made hot-air balloon to the West. The first flight failed: Balloon silk got soaked with moisture due to a foggy night and thus became too heavy, the balloon had to make an emergency landing few hundred metres before the Wall. A second balloon was built and  few weeks later the efforts were successful.

One refugee used another element and fled in a home-made canoe or sailing boat across the Baltic Sea. Several hot-air balloons were placed on the water in order to provide many different interference factors for the radar. However, here again the weather did not help matters, a storm came and drifted the boat past the actual goal "Denmark". Fortunately, a ferry picked up the completely exhausted escapee.

 „Here you can see many different ways of how the people escaped the GDR. You cannot see why they did it. You have to think for yourself about it. “, explains the museum guide to the participants of the 2nd Real Estate Workshop which was organized by Viadrina professor Georg Stadtmann at the DIW in Berlin. During a two-day Workshop participants from South Africa, Israel, Spain, Italy, France, Denmark, Georgia and Germany exchanged views on the connection between the real estate sector and macroeconomic developments. Should a central bank react to undesirable developments on the real estate market in the future and, for example, pick up interest rates if real estate prices rise too high? Insofar, again BORDERS were addressed. Which factors have an influence on real estate prices in European metropolises? In which cities the markets are rather overheated? These are some questions which were critically discussed. Our sincere thanks to all participants, to the organising committee of DIW and to the Fritz Thyssen Foundation for their financial support. Thanks also to Dr. Peter Ramsauer and Klaus Wowereit for the acceptance of patronage for this event.

Morten Skak (University of Southern Denmark) explains the Five Finger Development Plan in the
region around Copenhagen: The fingers can be covered by buildings, between the fingers
green spaces for recreation shall remain.