What would Berlin be without its persistent neighborhood initiatives? Where politics is slow and sleepy, citizens are often all the more alert. Berlin’s committed people are not deterred by the administration’s “wagon castle” mentality, nor by any official ping-pong, the shifting of responsibility back and forth. They boldly stick to what they think is good for the neighborhood and therefore what they want to achieve.

There are two examples in our current district newsletter from Steglitz-Zehlendorf: For ten years, a school community on Ostpreußendamm has been fighting for safe routes to school. But apart from announcements, nothing has happened so far. Now there was an on-site meeting with new announcements, new hope – and as a precaution, the reservation of new, permanent protests if nothing changes (more here in the newsletter).

Residents have been pointing out the pollution and silting up of the forest lake in Zehlendorf for just as long. The body of water with no outflow stinks again and again, but the lake rests quietly when it comes to administration. But now the politicians even dared to get into the boats and onto the water with the residents and promised improvement here too (more on this in the newsletter).

We report and see if words are followed by deeds.

The Tagesspiegel newsletter, which you can order here free of charge, recently celebrated its sixth anniversary and is available for all twelve Berlin districts, with more than 268,000 subscriptions. In it we inform you once a week in a bundled and compact way about what’s going on in your district. We also often let readers have their say in the newsletters, after all nobody knows Berlin’s neighborhoods as well as the people who live there.