Old town of Waldenbuch: Vibrant downtown concepts – Böblingen

The Waldenbuch tithe barn is under discussion as a city library, workplace or market hall. Photo: Claudia Barner

Waldenbuch is setting the course for the sustainable pursuit of modernization in the historic old town. There are several ideas for a tithing barn.

Proud half-timbered houses, winding streets, a castle with a history – the historic old town of Waldenbuch is a real gem. But what is it like to live in the shadows of the past, how can modern life develop in old structures, and what impulse does it have to do so? The first responses appeared on Wednesday evening at the residents’ meeting. Because in several exposed places, new offers, services and places of well-being are to be created.

Read from our offer: The castle is not renovated on the side

It’s for sure: the historic old town needs to be made more attractive. Inclusion in the state’s reconstruction program paved the way. Now the question arises: what are we going to do with it? In the future, the basis for making future decisions will be the analysis of the historical area. Markus Numberger from the Bureau of Building Research and Monument Conservation has been researching the structure, essence and importance of downtown buildings, streets and squares over the past few months. He concluded: “Little has changed in the last 200 years.”

What buildings are of historical importance?

The list of 72 cultural monuments now shows which buildings are of particular historical importance – most of them are concentrated around the palace and the market square. But the analysis should also serve as the basis for making decisions for residents of the outer redevelopment lane. “We have to see the old town as a whole. For the characteristic landscape of the city, the surroundings are as important as the distinctive buildings, ”emphasized the expert.

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The bustling city center also includes crowd-pull elements that promote meetings and encourage people to talk. That place is to be the old tithing barn that is now owned by the city. The working group, chaired by the architect and monuments expert Verena Lutz, for the first time prepared the proposals that were presented at the residents’ meeting.

Zehntscheuer: work space, library or market hall?

There are three variants to choose from: use as a work space for people who want to rent a shared office, as a new location for the city library or as a market hall with regional suppliers. In a spontaneous poll among around 50 current citizens – mostly over 50 – there was an unambiguous vote in favor of the market hall concept. Conversion into apartments, which was also mentioned, is not an option. “For that, we would have had to destroy too much of the original structure,” explained Verena Lutz.

Read from our offer plus: What’s next with the old town of Waldenbuch?

Thanks to new discoveries, the ‘Zehntscheuer’ working group is now entering the next round. Progress has already been made in converting the old cemetery into a municipal park. Heiko Böttcher from the city’s building office unveiled the current plan, for which around 675,000 euros from federal funding had been approved by the end of 2024. “We want to create a really nice quiet zone,” explained Böttcher. The green oasis should also serve as a fresh air corridor for the city center and improve the connection to the lime kiln. A serpentine path is to be created where there is currently a steep uphill path.

The site has already been researched and digitized, the first results of the climate report are available and the tree population is documented. At the moment, geological and static tests of the cemetery wall are underway. The State Monuments Office was also involved in preserving historical treasures, such as penitential crosses in and on the wall.

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