This is the fourth and final part of our Karl-Marx-Allee walking tour.
Once you hit Frankfurter Tor, the boulevard turns into Frankfurter Allee. Since the buildings are in the same style, we will keep walking for another block. It amazes me that there is practically no graffiti between Alexanderplatz and Frankfurter Tor, but after Frankfurter Tor it’s a common sight. It’s not Kreuzberg amounts of graffiti but it is definitely noticeable (below is an extreme example). You can also see that although the buildings on Karl-Marx-Allee are more stylish and attractive than the typical GDR apartment blocks, the prettiness is only skin deep with tiles falling off the yet-to-be-renovated buildings.
Frankfurter Tor, home to two beautiful towers and excellent transportation connections.
Over the past few years, the buildings on Karl-Marx-Allee have been restored, one by one. In late 2014, this building was restored to its former glory, although they left a bit of work for the future. The original balconies are on the left side, weathered, falling apart and black from 60 years of pollution swirling around them. On the right side, you can see how the balconies looked when they were new. Quite a difference.
The tiles and brackets were cleaned/replaced on this building but the more expensive stone columns, plinths and balusters remain in a weathered state.
Old and new balconies and a nice library in the middle.
Statues on top of the offices depict the working class of the GDR. In the background, you can see the huge new development of fancy apartments popping up. These apartments have been vandalized several times since construction started. They are located on Rigaer Straße, a street known for its numerous squats, far-left leaning residents and of course anti-gentrification views.
These statues have been covered for a year now, but luckily someone gave them a scarf and flowers to hold while they wait to be refurbished.
We’ll leave you with a short video about the building of Karl-Marx-Allee (Stainallee).