KREUZBERGED BERLIN

Everything You Never Knew You Wanted to Know About Berlin

TODAY IN KREUZBERG: MARCH 12 – WILLIBALD-ALEXIS-STRASSE

1889

The future Willibald-Alexis-Strasse on Hobrechts´plan (the street No. 23 is today´s Fidicinstrasse; notice two large local breweries nearby)

The future Willibald-Alexis-Strasse on Straube´s plan – the first parallel to No. 23 (the street No. 23 is today´s Fidicinstrasse; notice three large local breweries nearby already there in 1871)

Two streets on Hobrecht´s original plan for urban development of Berlin: Nr. 23b und Nr. 27b, Abt. II des Bebauungsplanes are given a joint name of Willibald-Alexis-Strasse.

As part of the so called Chamisokiez – the middle-class neighbourhood around Chamisoplatz and south of Bergmannstrasse – it is also one of the most desirable addresses in this part of town. None the least because of its central location combined with a quiet atmosphere and easy access to all indispensable facilities. Such as the Chamisoplatz playground with what might be the highest concentration of stylishly clad and (not “/or”) mature parenthood in Germany´s capital (if not in the whole of the Republic).

What makes the street even more attractive is the fact that all the beautifully renovated houses bearing numbers from 7 to 36 are part of the so called Denkmalbereich and stand under a preservation order.

As for Willibald Alexis himself, the man who gave German literature a genre known as historical romance and generously populated his novels with fair wenches and old Brandenburgian heroes (his inspiration was none other than Sir Walter Scott and Ivanhoe), he actually used a pseudonym, a nome de plume. Had he not chosen to take one, the street would be called Georg-Wilhelm-Heinrich-Häring-Strasse instead. Perish the thought!

Here is a photo of one very famous Berlin resident taking a stroll in Willibald-Alexis-Strasse and sporting a wool coat, a flat cap and a piglet on his arm. The photo was taken in 1979 by a brilliant Kreuzberg photographer, Wolfgang Krolow.

David Bowie in Willibald-Alexis-Strasse (photo by Wolgang Krolow)

David Bowie in Willibald-Alexis-Strasse (photo by Wolfgang Krolow)

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