Since 2011, the deactivation of the US military areas in Mannheim has led to intense public participation. Citizens could submit their ideas and suggestions for the conversion at numerous events, via Internet and by mail. These submissions were summarized and documented in a handbook titled “1000 Ideas for a City That Builds”. From these ideas, five concepts ensued: Green, Engineering Mile, Culture, Housing and Energy. They comprise the framework for further land development. Furthermore, numerous other projects could be garnered from the public's ideas, such as the Federal Garden Show and alternative forms of housing.
The administration submitted a total of four white papers to the local council, in which the participation process was documented and the results were summarized in a key concepts paper. The local council has adopted these key concepts, thereby ensuring that the results of the public participation process are acted upon.
The City of Mannheim presented White Paper I in 2011 and White Paper II in 2012. The third White Paper was published in February 2014. At the end of 2016, White Paper IV was published. This White Paper provides an interim balance sheet after five years of conversion. It is also the completion of the work by the Conversion Office, which closed at the end of 2016.