Feature photo: Europabank of the Heilbronn Construction Guild
The EUROPA-UNION Heilbronn has been trying for a very long time Europe House to initiate in Heilbronn. Already my predecessor as Heilbronn district chairman, Prof. Dr. Walter Dorr, had worked on it in vain, although he was well connected with the high society in Heilbronn.
Hardly elected, I decided to take up this idea again and underpin it with an additional educational requirement, to make it palatable to the top management and the municipal council. Even trying this General and political education project for all citizens of Heilbronn with the already established Heilbronner Experience to link it came to nothing or fell on deaf ears at the top of the administration.
When the mayor of us European federalists a few years ago Double, a spa town in the northern Black Forest, proudly presented “his” Europaweg, we Heilbronners took the idea of a Europaweg and the promise to implement it in Heilbronn home with us.
A first attempt to realize such a Europe trail in the course of the Federal Horticultural Show in Heilbronn failed; Obviously this idea was too silly for those responsible or the idea behind it for a city with a good 130 different nationalities, as the city administration likes to rumor, was probably not generally accepted.
The EUROPA-UNION recently made a second attempt, especially in times when there is apparently not even enough money to maintain the existing urban infrastructure, let alone to adapt it to current needs — not even to an already existing and more and more crumbling "corridor“ for pedestrians and cyclists – the city of Heilbronn the Europaweg from Europe Square along the Neckar up to the Wertwiesenpark, as this could be prepared easily and without great expense.
In addition, such a Europe route would be ours Heilbronn Europaplatz redeem a little from its dreary existence and make us Heilbronners and our guests a little more tangible again - and this too without major investments.
This Europaweg initiated by the EUROPA-UNION could be brought to life in cooperation with the city of Heilbronn and other stakeholders.
The Europaweg should
- as mentioned, start at Europaplatz and go along the Neckar to the Wertwiesenpark;
- include the existing benches and those that are at least partially in need of renovation, with these benches being redesigned under the auspices of the municipal operations office;
- be sponsored.
In a first expansion stage,
- the existing benches are painted in the respective national colors of European countries. The EUROPA-UNION is happy to sponsor the "Europabank".
- Associations, twin towns, companies, schools, churches, individuals etc. can be won over for further sponsorships.
- each bank would also have its own identifier. This means that the Europaweg could also be used for a traditional running and search game, which is ideal for children, young people and adults who are young at heart.
- the painting and later maintenance of the benches can also be used as a summer activity for children and young people, who paint the benches under the guidance of employees from the works office.
Received in a second expansion stage
- the benches each have a panel showing information about the respective country and, if available, about the corresponding partner city;
- a QR code that leads to a website that
+ on the one hand shows further relevant information about the bank, country and people and
+ on the other hand leads to information pages of the city of Heilbronn, which are particularly important for people from the country of origin of the respective bank.
In a third expansion stage,
- Country-specific "art objects" - if possible designed by children and young people - are placed next to or on each bench;
- these are recreated annually, with their "decay" being documented throughout the year;
- or they are rehabilitated annually;
- Art actions in cooperation with schools and museums are to be further expanded, with great educational and artistic potential.
The second attempt to establish a Europaweg in Heilbronn has now started, and I am already looking forward to the answers that may come from the city administration and the municipal council.
Both Heilbronn institutions are in the fortunate position that the citizens of Heilbronn are constantly coming up with ideas and suggestions as to how Heilbronn could be made even better and more beautiful, while saving as much money as possible. The ideas, such as the opening of the Lerchenberg tunnel, the Neckar in Heilbronn for House boats or to design a Europe trail are just a few of the most recent examples.
Both the municipal council and the city administration would be well advised to at least consider citizens' initiatives and ideas, especially if they are not really cost-intensive projects.
However, it seems that in Heilbronn, and this despite the obviously tense budgetary situation, which is already leading to supposed regressions in urban development — I would like to refer to the recent discussion about the city library remember — further new major projects are under discussion, the only current purpose of which can only be the self-portrayal of individuals.
So we can all be happy that the voice of Heilbronn recently only wrote about an expansion of the Neckar promenade worth millions and not about the idea of a colossal statue with a drinks bar in the base.