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An artistic and cultural project in Munich, Germany

Name Petuelpark
Place Munich
Country Germany
Topic An artistic and cultural project
Author(s) Martina Tuda
Completion opening: 2004
Client Stadt München, Baureferat
Project costs 10,9 Mio. €
<googlemap version="0.9" lat="48.175244" lon="11.580791" type="satellite" zoom="13" width="300" height="250">


Short description

The Petuelpark is a newly-made park with gardening and artistic elements situated above the Petueltunnel. Both, the park and the tunnel, connect the districts Milbertshofen/Munichand Schwabing/Munich.

Rationale: Why is this case study interesting?


First of all, the Petuelpark is directly in Munich. So the population density is high in comparison to free space. Because of that fact, it's indispensible to make "new" space - for example above tunnels - accesible for public purposes. Beyond, in large cities there is often a leak of green space where people can recreate. So it's interesting to see how to handle such problems.


In this case, the concept is made for all generations and in some extent by dint of participatory and integration approaches. Therefore, there are different thematic areas in order to fullfill as much as possible the requirements of a wide ranged person group.

An art concept called Quivid was developed contemporaneously with the urban landscape design. Now, 13 artworks are intalled all-around the park area.

planning levels:

  • interdisciplinary planning -> more possibilities, open up new vistas, connection of social, economic and design aspects
  • planning "on different spacial levels" -> creation of "new" open space
  • planning "in breaches" -> handling of a grown-up city

Author's perspective

professional background of the article's author:

  • final semester at an Univerity of Applied Sciences (Germany)
  • study field: Landscape Architecture
  • two completed internships, exchange semester (Hungary)

Landscape and/or urban context

The Petuelpark above the Petueltunnel (longest tunnel in Munich) is located in the North of Munich between the district Schwabing and Milbertshofen. The Petuelring is a part of the "Mittlerer Ring" which is an important main road with about 120.000 vehicles per day.

The park extend from the crossroad Knorrstrasse/Belgradstrasse to the Leopoldstrasse. It's about 650 m length and at least 60 m width. Close-by, there are underground and tramway stops. Besides, the Olympiapark, the BMW-Museum and -Skyscraper and the "Münchner Freiheit" are some places of interest in the near of the Petuelpark. In the North of Munich, the park supplement the "green net" composed of Olympiapark, Luitpoldpark and Englischer Garten.

These city part is dense populated and there is a mixture between generations and nationalities.

Historical, at 1963 there was still a tunnel named Petueltunnel, which was an underground crossing of the tramway. This tunnel was put out of service at 1992 and was deconstructed because of the new one. The name Petuel is related to the family Petuel that renders credit to Munich.

Cultural/social/political context

Cultural explanation:

Around the park, the social and financial circumstances are really mixed. There are of course different aged persons, people of varied nations and cultural background. Therefore, the creaters must take care of a wide range of requirements and needs. This area should not only join two districts of Munich, but also join the people itself and provide a basis for interactions.

Legal Framework:

As a result of a public decision for a extention of the "Mittleren Ring" (main traffic road in form of a circle) and its tunnel management, this park installation was initiated by the capital Munich itself (Landeshauptstadt München Baureferat). 1999, a "Gutachterverfahren" (procedure for calling in expert opinion) was made from which Jühling und Bertram Landschaftsarchitekten arose.


  • completion (Petueltunnel): July 2002
  • summer 2002: preparatory work (retaining walls, rough subgrade work, substrates)
  • autumn 2002: subnatural lining Nymphenburg-Biedersteiner-Kanal, start gardening and landscape work (north-side)
  • 2003: gardening and landscape work, trees, plants, bridges, playgrounds, path, planting and lawn areas, furniture
  • opening: 27.06.2004
  • 2005: Buildings ready (café with restaurant garden, Fontänenplatz, Sozialpavillon with Generationengarten)

Spatial analysis of area/project/plan

main structural features:

Guiding themes are the long, shape of the overall area as an association to the main road underneath as well as to the "Nymphenburg-Biedersteiner-Kanal" and the sharing into different levels in order to handle the situation above a tunnel.


  • linear shapes and elements
  • three places, situated along the promenade at main connection crossings, with various functions and restaurants
  • so called "Spielbänder" (band of playgrounds) with playgrounds for different aged children and design for their needs; an important playground is the "Wasserspielplatz" (water playground)that is barrier-free constructed and where children of proximate schools helped to design it;
  • Südmauer with gardening elements
  • artworks and art exhibitions
  • individual designed furniture

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Core questions working group open spaces

How does the design of an open space contribute to a run down neighbourhood?

How are open spaces linked to the adjacent areas?

The Petuelpark as well as the Petueltunnel connect itself the districts Schwabing and Milbertshofen.

How are open spaces used?

The park is made for all generations. So it is splitted into different parts: There are some kind of playgrounds made for older and younger children, furniture for relaxing and sunbathing, long ways in order to run or cycle, meeting places such as cafes and restaurants, different small gardens, works of arts and so on. These various elements are used to bring people together and to fullfill a wide range of needs.

Which elements make an open space successful and attractive?

Individual design which creates a personal relation to the place makes a park succesfull. There was a good interaction between the public, professionals and the party responsible. Some workshops were organised: workshop about the park itself, playground workshop with children, discussions with handicapped people about their needs. So it's a close contact between the creaters and the public and futures can bring their ideas into the planning process.

Despites, many kind of different activities are possible.The park is made for user of different ages, nationalities and physical abilities. Therefore, you can access the park via ways and brigdes. The designer took also care of handicapped accesibiliy. On the lower level, there are some plant and flower installations. Here, visitors can walk through, take a rest and recreate. On the top level, it's much open space for playing, walking and relaxation.

How can the historical background of an open space be shown to the public?

In this case study the historical background is that the park was built above a contemporanously constructed tunnel which is part of a traditional main traffic connection in Munich. To underline this fact the visitors could look down via a scuttle and watch the traffic.

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Core Questions Working Group Public Space and Civic Identity

Who was involved in the participation process?

There were non-professionals as well as professionals involved in the planning process.


  • citizens of all ages, especially dweller of the districts Milbertshofen and Schwabing
  • children
  • people with disabilities, especially paralised, visually impaired and blind persons, from the institution "Stiftung Pfennigparade", that is close to the Petuelpark

and professionals:

  • Baureferat und Planungsreferat München, which are responsible for all manners concerning the planning and construction process
  • Ingenieurbüro Dr. Blasy + Mader, which is an engineering company
  • Landschaftsarchitekurbüro Jühling + Bertram, which is a company for landscape architecture
  • 13 international artists under the leadership of Stefan Huber

took part in the participation process.

How was the participation process implemented (methods applied)?

For working with non-professionals, different kinds of workshops were organised:

  • A civil workshop called 'Workshop Petuelpark' in which citizens, responsibles of official entities. the artist Stefan Huber and companies for engineering and landscape architecture took an active part in. There, some ideas were evolved and suggestions made by the citizens were discussed.
  • An other ohter workshop named 'Workshop Wasserspielplatz' was concerning the childrens who did handicrafts in order to visualise their ideas of a water playground.
  • Besides these workshops, people with disabilities from the centre 'Stiftung Pfennigparade' were involved in the planning process in order to make the park not only handicapped accessible, but also to look to this people for advice.

As well as participatory interactions between professionals and laypersons, there was also interdisciplinary planning and cooperation within a occupational group:

  • Thirteen international artists worked together under the concept Quivid - it's a Munich programm for art elements in the urban context so called 'Kunst am Bau'. At first, there was a competition with the requirement of teaming up with other artists. The winner was Stefan Huber who acted as artist group leader. The individual works of art should be part of an overall concept.
  • The interdisciplinary participation concerns different types of private and public companies - for example in order to build the tunnel itself, to construct the brigdes, to make the gardening element, to create the high quality buildings and so on.

In how far does/did the project respond to people's needs?

First and foremost, the project respnd to the people's need for green space and recreation in a high density city.

The concept of the park tries to deal with the requirement of people of all ages as well as different social and national background as well as unequal physical abilities. In order to fullfill these demands, the park combines many kinds of individual parcel with a overall structure and style accentuated with some modern art.

And the most important fact is that the park has its own modern style with extraordinary details that creates some kind of individuality and recognition. So people could identify with the Petualpark and bear personal relation that satisfies the need of singularity and familarity.

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Analysis of program/function

see: [Spatial analysis of area/project/plan], [Core question: How are open spaces used?] and [Which elements make an open space successful and attractive?]

Analysis of design/planning process


As a result of a public decision for a extention of the "Mittleren Ring" (main traffic road in form of a circle) and its tunnel management, this park installation was initiated by the capital Munich itself (Landeshauptstadt München Baureferat). 1999, a "Gutachterverfahren" (procedure for calling in expert opinion) was made from which Jühling und Bertram Landschaftsarchitektenarose.

important collaborations:

  • builder: Landeshauptstadt München, Baureferat
  • overall construcion supervision 'Ausbau Mittlerer Ring': Baureferat Hauptabteilung Tiefbau, Johann Wittmann
  • construction supervision 'Landschaftsbauarbeiten': P38 Wendler + Kalckhoff Landschaftsarchitekten BDLA, München
  • project management 'Park': Baureferat Hauptabteilung Gartenbau, Dr. Ulrich Schneider, Harald Mattheas, Nicole Preussner (Kunst)
  • project management 'Café': Baureferat Hauptabteilung Hochbau, Ursula Graf, Doris Rücker
  • open space planning: Jühling und Bertram Landschaftsarchitekten Gbr BDLA, München
  • planning 'Sozialpavillon' and 'Café': Kiessler + Partner Architekten GmbH, München
  • planning 'water': Planungsgemeinschaft Ingenieurbüro Dr. Blasy + Dr. Øverland, Eching a. Ammersee
  • planning steel bridge 'Stahlbrücke': Auer + Weber Architekten Mayr + Ludescher Ingenieure
  • art concept: Baureferat, Quivid, curator: Stephan Huber, München

Collaborations while the planning process concerning professional and non-professionals see Core questions [Who was involved in the participation process?] and [How was the participation process implemented?]

Analysis of use/users

The park is made for all generations, nations and physical abilities. So it is splitted into different parts: There are some kind of playgrounds made for older and younger children, furniture for relaxing and sunbathing, long ways in order to run or cycle, meeting places such as cafes and restaurants, different small gardens, works of arts and so on. In sommertimes, there are a lot of possibilities for children's play, but it's too less shadow at the playground. In wintertime, activities are strongly moderated.

Peer reviews or critique

Mention tz-Rose: The TZ (a newpaper in Munich) awarded Baureferenten Horst Haffner, Kunstkurator Stephan Huber and Landscape architect Stefanie Jühling und Otto A. Bertraml the weekly assigned tz-Rose in order to appreciate the artistic composition of the Petuelpark.

Points of success and limitations

  • What do you see as the main points of success and limitations of the area/project/plan?

Illustration: Summary table

What can be generalized from this case study?

  • Are there any important theoretical insights?

Short statement plus background notes

Which research questions does it generate?

Short statement plus background notes

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Image Gallery

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  • official homepage of Munich - Petuelpark:

[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9] [10]

  • homepage Petuelpark:


  • additional links:

[12] [13] [14]

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