Luisenstädtischer Kanal (Luisenstadt Canal), Green strip, Kreuzberg/Mitte;
1848-52 by Peter Joseph Lenné, redesigned by Erwin Barth starting from 1926
The Luisenstädtischer Kanal was built as a navigable waterway between the Spree and the Landwehrkanal. The canal was part of a construction plan first publicized in 1839-40 by Peter Joseph Lennè as "Projected Decorative Strips and Border Strips in Berlin and the Immediate Vicinity". Fashioned as a "decorative strip", this waterway constituted the ideal center for the planned extension of Luisenstadt. The waterway was filled in for hygienic reasons in 1926, and developed some years later into a green strip for the densely populated districts of Kreuzberg and Mitte. This development was planned by Erwin Barth and created special gardens within the canal walls as well as a large water basin, the Engelsbecken ("basin of angels"), which became the focal point in front of the St. Michael-Kirche. The gardens in the northern section of the canal were razed with the erection of the Berlin Wall in 1961. After the fall of the wall, extensive original material was uncovered and secured during archeological excavation of the garden. Lime trees planted in the spring of 1991 immediately transformed the wall and "death strip" into an urban boulevard. In the rose garden the canal walls were restored, the lawns between them planted with roses, and the Indian Fountain restored to resemble the historic model. An evergreen garden was created at its original location on the Engel and Bethanien embankments in accordance with the original, recovered ground plan.