Unionviertel in Dortmund: the creative quarter
You turn 360 degrees on the spot as you observe the elaborate, multi-coloured graffiti around you. But this is not casual vandalism, this is pure street art. One could say, it is the coal-face of art! Absolute Ruhrpott - as the locals call the former coal-mining region along the Ruhr valley.
The inner courtyard of the Adlerkiosk in Dortmund's Adlerstrasse is typical of the district: the Unionviertel is colourful, artistic and creative. Appropriately it is called the creative quarter. You can even book street art tours here to learn more about the back story to the paintings and their painters.
On the tour you will pass numerous galleries, artist’s studios and also some record shops which have gradually settled in the quarter around the Dortmunder U Tower and Rheinische Strasse. In addition to artists and students who have discovered the district with its many pizzerias, snack bars and drinking kiosks and made it their home, the Sri Lankan community also has a strong presence here with restaurants and shops.
Plenty of green in the west of Dortmund
Situated in the west of Dortmund, only four underground stops away from the city centre, life in the Unionviertel is good. Admittedly, unlike Kreuzviertel, there are less chic old buildings here, but what the district perhaps lacks in finesse it certainly makes up for in “Ruhrpott” charm. The people here are honest, they're hands-on and they love their neighbourhood. Why wouldn’t they? There is plenty of green! Tremonia Park, Westpark and pretty Drei-Bäume-Park (“Three Trees Park”) are just around the corner. The residents here also add to the colour of the neighbourhood by planting an abundance of flowers in the beds between the parking spaces and along the streets.
In the spirit of the urbanists, an association has been formed in Unionviertel to improve urban coexistence among the local people. The association takes care, for example, of art in public spaces, urban gardening and up-cycling.
Our day trip tips
Apart from the Dortmund U Tower, don’t miss the FZW centre, which has concerts, dance parties and poetry slams. If you get tired, you can re-fuel with a cool beer at Kraftstoff or the trendy Bergmann Kiosk, or have a delicious ice cream at Kugelpudel.
Either way, Unionviertel is only a stone's throw away from the central station and is definitely worth a detour!