Capital city region of Berlin-Brandenburg

Enlarge photo: Capital city region
Capital city region
Image: Gemeinsame Landesplanung

Together, the Federal States of Berlin and Brandenburg form the capital city region of Berlin-Brandenburg. Spatial planning policy is jointly managed by institutions of both federal states so that they act in unison also when cooperating with the federal government and other federal states. The cooperation between the federal government and the federal states in the field of spatial planning is mainly organised by the Conference of Ministers for Spatial Planning (MKRO).

In the region with its nearly six million inhabitants on an area of 30,000 km 2, the characteristics of the metropolis of Berlin combine with the structure of the large-area Federal State of Brandenburg with its mostly low population density. The capital city region is characterised by very different individual areas that all have their own yet mutually complementary strengths and potential.

The capital city region stretches a maximum of 291 km from north to south and a maximum of 244 km from west to east; its geometric centre is located in Berlin-Reinickendorf. The joint internal border between Berlin and Brandenburg measures 234 km in total length; the external border of the Federal State of Brandenburg with Poland is 267 km long. The population density in the capital city region of Berlin-Brandenburg, broken down to individual municipalities/urban districts, ranges between eight (Municipality of Münchehofe) and about 16,000 (Berlin-Friedenau) inhabitants (Einwohner = EW) per square kilometre (km 2) and averages around 194 EW/km 2. The capital city region is part of the North German Plain and features a topography formed by the Ice Age with few elevations measuring a maximum of 200 m in height. The region has many water bodies and boasts more than 3,000 lakes. About 4 % of the total area of the capital city region consists of water bodies.

The federal states have developed joint guiding principles under supervision of the Joint Spatial Planning Department of Berlin-Brandenburg, which was adopted by the federal state governments in August 2006. Since that time, the region has officially been calling itself ‘capital city region of Berlin-Brandenburg’ and has been included under this name in the guiding principles for spatial planning of the federal government and the federal states. The capital city region is a member of the Initiativkreises Europäische Metropolregionen in Deutschland (IKM – Initiative of European Metropolitan Regions in Germany).

Berlin and Brandenburg already maintain a number of joint public authorities and institutions such as the Verkehrsverbund Berlin-Brandenburg transport association, joint specialised high courts, the Flughafen Berlin Brandenburg GmbH that was established together with the federal government for building the new airport, the Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg broadcasting house, the Prussian Palaces and Gardens Foundation Berlin-Brandenburg, the Berlin-Brandenburg Statistical Office and the Joint Federal State Planning Department Berlin-Brandenburg. About 25 treaties and numerous administrative agreements regulate joint issues in a host of different fields. The number and topics of this collaboration ( have steadily increased over the years and will increase even further.

The objectives of the guiding principles for the capital city region of Berlin-Brandenburg are being implemented by way of a broad range of joint activities (e.g. Innovation Strategy, Masterplan Health) and projects (e.g. MORO ‘Kooperation und Vernetzung im Nordosten – Cooperation and Networking in the North-east’). Simultaneously, the cooperation between institutions of both federal states has been and is being intensified.

More information about the capital city region is available in the 2013 Regional Planning Report.