Robert Schmidt 1869–1934

Stadtbaumeister in Essen und Landesplaner im Ruhrgebiet

Robert Schmidt (1869-1934) published his famous "Denkschrift" on the spatial organization of the Ruhr region in 1912. This writing prompted the mayors of the cities in the region to establish the "Ruhr Coal District Settlement Association" in 1919. From 1920 until his retirement in 1932, Schmidt was director of this first regional planning association in Europe. In these years, not least as a result of the agreements of the Treaty of Versailles, the Ruhr region faced major challenges that could only be met through more intensive coordination among the cities in the coalfield.

  • Author: Ursula von Petz
  • ISBN: 978 3 8030 0790 2
  • Size: 16,5 x 22 cm. Paperback
  • Edition: 1st edition, original edition


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  • Schmidt was an early advocate of steering the region’s uncoordinated spatial development in an orderly direction and securing green spaces for the working population. He received ideas for this during his many years of work in the municipal administration of the city of Essen. It familiarized him with developments abroad, especially in the USA and England, which were presented at the three urban planning exhibitions in Berlin, Düsseldorf and London in 1910. His practical, yet always visionary work in the Ruhr region made Schmidt a highly respected authority abroad as well. It was not until two generations later that the first German faculty for spatial planning was founded at the University of Dortmund in 1968. With this, his concern finally found academic recognition.

  • Author Ursula von Petz
    ISBN 978 3 8030 0790 2
    Size 16,5 x 22 cm. Paperback
    Number of pages 240 pages
    Illustrations 38 Illustrations
    Languages German
    Edition 1st edition, original edition
    Release March 2016


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