Can you get something trend-setting off the ground in Bavaria without the CSU and SPD? It doesn’t sound very realistic at first, but in Würzburg it’s exactly this question that will lead to an oath. There, citizens will have to decide in two months whether a large car park on the Main (known under the name “Talavera”) will remain free of charge – or better not in the future. What may sound like a side issue has become a fundamental political decision. And just to the question: Is it possible without people’s parties?
A loose alliance of parties has formed in the university and cathedral city around Würzburg’s green mayor, Martin Heilig – who bears the ringing title of “climate mayor”. The Greens have forged an extraordinary liaison, and it encompasses pretty much every shade and political persuasion. The only thing they have in common is that there is no people’s party.
The FDP works in this alliance – no joke – together with the left. And the ÖDP with the free electoral community. A total of seven parties and groups are involved, whose common denominator would under normal circumstances be difficult to identify even with the help of creativity-enhancing substances. But it obviously exists, in one of the city’s key issues. All partners want a different transport policy, which is central in every big city, but downright fundamental in the Würzburg basin.
The money raised will be used for free tram rides
The most symbolic goal of this colorful alliance is to price a tin piazza on the Main that has been free for decades – it offers care for 1000 cars – in the future; and use the money raised instead for free tram rides in the city center of Würzburg. So that would be a kind of city zone, similar to Augsburg.
One initiative is fighting for the – alleged – right to free parking, on July 24th there will be a referendum. Exit completely open. Meanwhile, nervousness is increasing in the CSU. Should the alliance be successful, there might be a permanently colorful majority in the city council. Then the CSU would continue to provide the mayor (with a CDU party book). But then he would look more like a city breakfast director.