The first buildings of importance in the Berlin-Brandenburg region were built in the 12th and 13th centuries under the margraves from the House of the Askanians.
The Cistercian monks erected cloisters such as Lehnin, Chorin, and Zinna. Following suit, many towns and cities in the region were built up, such as Berlin, Brandenburg, Potsdam, Spandau, Frankfurt, or Templin.
Many village and city churches, town halls and city fortifications came into being: at the beginning they were made of granite blocks and later mainly of brick.
The first architectural style typical of the region- the "märkische Backsteingotik"- developed and reached its peak in the 14th century. (Nikolaikirche, Marienkirche - Berlin)