As recently as ten years ago, many saw Neukölln as the capital’s most dangerous social powder keg. It would be interesting to find out how many of those who saw Neukölln this way,  have moved there in the meantime. Today, the north side is seen as the borough’s “in” district, where social and cultural diversity are both carefully tended. Overall, 47.6% of the residents in Neukölln have a (family) immigration history, i.e. almost half of all those living here. 

People from EU countries also seem to have taken a liking to Neukölln. As of 31.12.2020, the 28,343 non-German EU-citizens represent 8.6% of the borough‘s population, especially in the northern part from the S-Bahn ring to Hermannplatz. 

Who governs? 

Martin Hikel is a Social Democrat and has been Mayor of Neukölln since 2018. In 2016, the SPD (Social Democratic Party of Germany) won 19 seats. The CDU (Christian Democratic Union) won 10 seats, the Greens 9, the AfD (Alternative for Germany) won 8 seats, the Left Party 7 and the FDP (Free Democratic Party) 2 seats. 

On 26 September 2021, all EU citizens have the opportunity to vote for the borough assembly. You can find out here what it is all about and how it works in eight different languages. 

A date 

On 2 February 1732, Kaiser Friedrich Wilhelm I invited Europe’s protestants to Prussia. In the same year, he settled members of a Bohemian religious community in Rixdorf. They were followers of reformist Jan Hus, who was burned at the stake in Prague in 1415. Today, the neighbourhood around Richardplatz in Neukölln is called Böhmisch-Rixdorf (Bohemian Rixdorf). 

A book 

“Hipster wird’s nicht” (roughly: It can’t get any more hipster than this) by Uli Heinemann tells the story of 44-year-old Thomas, who moves into a hipster WG (flat-sharing community) in Neukölln. As the story unfolds, it becomes clearer and clearer its narrator no longer recognises his old neighbourhood. A humorous chronicle of the borough’s development. 

An attraction 

The Britzer Garten is a major contribution to the 20% of Neukölln’s area that is either park or field. The borough is Berlin’s greenest. This attractive garden was built before the Wall fell to give Neukölln’s residents some nearby greenery. A magical place in which to enjoy a beautiful sunset. 

An unusual attraction 

The Museum Neukölln is much like other local museums, but does have a little something up its sleeve: in the old stall on the Britz farm, visitors learn about the borough’s history through 99 objects. The farmland itself is also definitely worth a visit. 

Which is your favourite place in Neukölln? What could the borough do better, how should it change? Your comments are part of the political discussion leading up to the BVV (local) election! 

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