Winter walk through the Bommersheim wood

The local council in Bommersheim (“Ortsbeirat”) are organising a winter walk through the area that used to be the Bommersheim wood on Thursday, 27th December, 2012.

Anyone who wants to join in should be at the car park at the Hohemark at 11am or at the riding hall in Bommersheim at 10.30am from where groups will travel by car to the Hohemark.

The walk will last 2 to 3 hours depending on the weather and finish with at the riding hall where there will be soup and cake.

Discussing the future of Northern Oberursel

The town’s „development process“ (STEP) finally made it to the northern end of Oberursel at the beginning of October, when around 50 people followed the invitation of the „Forum Nord“ to come to the Grundschule am Eichwäldchen to take part in a discussion about the future of the area.

The „Forum Nord“ is a collaboration between the social organisations in the area and was set up in 2005, obtaining „e.V.“ status in 2010. It currently has 17 member organisations.

After the introductions those present were asked to note down on green and red cards what they though the positive and negative aspects of the area are. These were then attached to a chart that had been split into two halves. But not equal halves. There was enough space for three columns of red cards, but only two of green ones. As such, there was not enough space for all of the cards to be attached and especially a lack of space for the green ones.

Many of the positive aspects where named over and over again, such as the closeness to the woods, the shops, the good connections to the road network and the U-Bahn, the kindergartens and the schools, the playgrounds for children up to 10 and also the fact that the area is relatively quiet.

On the negative side there were a variety of topics, such as the lack of an office from the town in the area (“Stadtteilbüro”), too many cars, things for teenagers to do, a lack of community rooms, the fact that many new houses are built very close together, the traffic situation around Frankfurt International School, too little for pensioners to do, too few child-care places, the plans to build on the area previously used by the riding centre and the increase in traffic associated with it, and finally the fact that the size of the relatively new primary school does is becoming too small for the catchment area. [Read more…]

A first look at Oberursel’s Ausländerbeirat

The last time that I wrote about the term “Ausländerbeirat” I had just voted in Oberursel to elect a new one in November 2010.  At the time I asked what the point of having one was, especially I did not know any of the candidates and the turnout at the election was only 3%.

For the benefit of readers who are not aware of the Ausländerbeirat (other than a voting slip every 5 years), it is an elected parliamentary body that every town in Hessen has where more than 1000 foreigners live.  And only those foreigners are eligible to stand for election and to vote.

As I understand it they have two purposes.  One is to support the integration of foreigners in the local community, and the other is to look at the decisions being made by other committees and the town parliament in order to comment on whether the non-German communities will be particularly affected by them.

Whether they have any power to block any of those decisions, I have yet to discover. [Read more…]

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