Water Expert: Cleaning the Spree
Ralf Steeg had a dream - he wanted to swim to work. In 2001 he began a project to clean the River Spree in Berlin and simultaneously provide the city with new cultural facilities in an innovative environmental solution...
Graduate engineer Ralf Steeg had been managing his own planning office for eight years when he took up a university course on landscape architecture at the TFH in Berlin. He designed garden landscapes in Berlin and elsewhere and for the Historical Museum Berne/Switzerland. He also worked in an advisory capacity for the Berlin Senate for many years. In the nineties Steeg staged various exhibitions on the subject of “Man and Nature”.
Together with a team of scientists, artists, engineers and social scientists since 2001, he has worked intensively on a plan to clean up the River Spree in Berlin so that people can swim in it again. In the past four years this team has developed an innovative, favourably priced technology to prevent discharges of waste water into the Spree and their transfer all over the world.
The new water treatment technology unites environmental protection, water management, architecture and urban development. The engineering office LURI.watersystems.GmbH, founded by Ralf Steeg together with the project developer Klaus Gabrielli in 2006, leads the project.
Four studies completed so far confirm the technical viability of the project. The first pilot project is to go into operation in the Spree in 2007. The aim is that the Spree will be clean by the year 2011.
He presented the Spree 2011 project to the Europe Now/Europe Next Arts and Science Encounter in Odessa, April 2007