Building on greenfield sites - Olaf Scholz's role in reverse

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Federal Chancellor for new districts on the outskirts of the city like in the 1970s

Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) was a guest at the "Heilbronner Stimme" newspaper's mid-term election check at the city's Kreissparkasse on November 12, 2023. In addition to topics such as migration, arms deliveries to Ukraine and Hamas terror, the discussion also focused on working (together) in the traffic light coalition.

And for them, the Chancellor revealed a "real surprise" when it came to the growing housing shortage. He spoke of the need for "a rethink (...)": "For the whole of Germany, you can say that we probably need 20 new districts in the most sought-after cities and regions - just like in the 1970s." In other words: new districts on greenfield sites. It wasn't just his own party colleagues who thought they couldn't believe their ears. Among the Greens and experts from the construction industry, too, his comments were met with incomprehension, even rejection.

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The Chancellor's statements have caused a stir among experts. bdla Federal Managing Director Mario Kahl suspects that the Chancellor is seriously concerned about social and housing policy. "But: on the one hand, the Chancellery is currently pursuing a planning and environmental policy roll-back that can make one fearful in view of major urban development projects. On the other hand, he doesn't seem to know or want to know how many large urban districts are already being planned and built." And he clarifies: "The new narrative of now building on greenfield sites and everything will soon be fine only wants to distract from the fact that the federal government is simply not making any progress, for example, with a land policy geared towards the common good as an important prerequisite for ensuring an adequate supply of housing."

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