Berlin's Friedrichstrasse has been closed to motorised through traffic since Saturday 29 September 2020.
Berliners have had to be patient for a long time, but since the weekend, the capital has been enriched by a pedestrian zone: Friedrichstraße is now only accessible for drivers and pedestrians. The signposting, which imposes a speed limit of 20 kmh for cyclists - so far unique in Germany - provided some amusement. The concept envisages that the new status quo will be maintained in this way until the end of January 2021. The section between Französische Straße and Leipziger Straße is already covered with many plants and benches, which invite you to linger and enjoy the outdoor gastronomic areas of the local traders and shops. An inauguration ceremony, which was scheduled for Saturday, had to be cancelled due to a counter-demonstration on the Corona distance rules. With this pop-up shopping street, Berlin is following the example of several international metropolises, which in turn had already shielded parts of their inner cities from motor vehicle traffic. Initial concerns that the actions would have a negative impact on the shops there have been refuted in all cases.
After the first two days, Berliners are also satisfied with their new promenade. With a positive result on Friedrichstrasse, the city is already thinking about new districts which could be traffic-calmed. For example, a side street, the famous Unter den Linden, which crosses Friedrichsstrasse, is a potential candidate for another car-free zone in the capital.