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Mega move to new Berlin airport begins

The Local · 11 Apr 2012, 09:58

Published: 11 Apr 2012 09:58 GMT+02:00

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The move will be even bigger and more complex than the 1999 move of the German government from Bonn to Berlin, organisers say.

At least 2,800 truck journeys will have to be made from the old airports to the new one before June 3, when the Berlin Brandenburg Willy Brandt airport will open its check-in desks for the first flights.

What has started this week with potted plants and stationary will culminate in one huge “night of nights” between June 2 and 3, when more than 600 truck-loads of crucial gear and a fleet of 60-tonne plane transporters will be shifted to the new airport in one night.

Tegel airport, in the north of the city, will shut in the next few weeks. Schönefeld, in the south east, will be fusing with Brandenburg.

“It is the first time that two airports will move overnight,” said spokesman for the €2.5 billion new airport, Leif Erichsen.

Schönefeld will continue running alongside the new airport, which will become the third largest in the country behind Frankfurt and Munich.

Officials have acknowledged the risks of such a move, Erichsen said, referring to the opening of a new terminal at London Heathrow that left thousands of irate travellers without baggage.

And with the attitude that “an airport is a little city,” airport officials are hoping that under the guidance of experts summoned from Munich who have advised on airport mergers worldwide, everything will go smoothly.

“Our aim is try to minimise areas where logistics might go awry,” said Erichsen. But he admitted “something will still go wrong.”

The “night of nights,” will see large sections of motorway closed across the city to allow trucks to roll through with the last vital pieces of the new airport.

Story continues below…

Around 40,000 jobs are expected to be created through the opening of the new airport, which officials hope will become a global gateway to Europe.

DPA/The Local/jcw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

14:31 April 11, 2012 by Jeffvm
>Schönefeld will continue running alongside the new airport

Are you sure? The terminal will be closed, only the runway will be used afaik. So it will not continue running.
15:12 April 11, 2012 by catjones
Unless there's a trucker's strike...then poetic justice.
16:42 April 12, 2012 by Sayer
It looks like the Berlin Hauptbanhoff in this picture. No doubt they will be beset with all of the hiccups the station did too. Now if we could just get those workers to try to comprehend the notion of "Customer Service" it would be wonderful. Instead of their haughty, "****-you!" attitude they currently have at Tegel. It's like the Wall never fell!
15:45 April 13, 2012 by bizeng
This new airport is an environmental catastrophe! No other recently-built "international" airport has dared to build so close to a densely populated area (Stansted, Charles de Gaul and Munich are far away from metropolitan areas), with such damage to the lives and health of hundreds of thousands.Your claim of 40000 jobs is unsubstantiated--most jobs will be only moved from one placed to another. I find it amazing that so man self-styled "greens" and "socialists" have a belief bordering on fetish worship (as the cargo-cult does) that by blasting ever more CO2 into the upper atmosphere, we can rescue Berlin's moribund fashion-based economy. Thousands must suffer so that money can be earned in the airport fast-food court (bought by Russian oligarchs stopping over on their way to Monaco) and so that "greens" can enjoy fresh strawberries from South Africa and fly off in jets to their countless vacations.
17:29 April 13, 2012 by McNair Kaserne
All this closing of Tempelhof, closing of Tegel, expenditure of billion of Euro's on a new airport is utter quatsch. A massive waste of available resource in favor of a new airport whose supposed benefits are completely theoretical. I have no doubt that we will see the newly available real estate made available to developers who will rake in large profits, so once again the people's resources which are bought and paid for already by their taxes will be stolen from them in the name of progress, and re-distributed to clever people who stage manage the whole thing.
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