Munich’s accession to the ranks of the most popular and most frequented international destinations in the world has in the past presented the city’s government and its people with many challenges, and continues to do so today. The exhibition “Ecopolis München” examines the relationship between Munich’s residents and their urban environment by focusing on the evolution of specific areas and particular sites. Among the areas featured are the city’s abattoir and Fröttmaning Hill (Fröttmaninger Müllberg), which was once a waste dump and is now a popular recreational area.
The exhibition, which continues until October 20, 2019 in the “whiteBOX” in the city’s Factory Quarter (Werksviertel), brings to light various lesser known aspects of the city’s development. For example, given the reputation of the English Garden and its many other parks, it comes as a surprise to learn that Munich has a higher proportion of sealed soil than any other city in Germany. Among the other topics highlighted in the exhibition are the social and ecological roles of the English Garden over the course of its history, the democratic ideals that underpinned the municipality’s approach to the planning of the Olympia Park, and why “sheep may safely graze” on the roof of an office building in the Bavarian capital. The exhibition is arranged in 12 thematic blocks, which provide visitors with a unique perspective on urban development in Munich.
“Our intention in mounting this exhibition was to demonstrate how people, plants, animals and bacteria, the lie of the land and its geological make-up, have together made the city into the vibrant environment we now live in,” explains Curator Laura Kuen. The exhibition itself was conceived and assembled by advanced undergraduate students enrolled in the Environmental Studies Certificate Program at LMU’s Rachel Carson Center, and represents a major extension of the range of themes covered by its predecessor “Ecopolis” in 2017.