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Germany > Berlin > Berlin > Berlin Tempelhof Airport

Berlin Tempelhof Airport

N 52°28.887', E 13°23.46'
2020-03-14
http://www.thf-berlin.de/
Our rating: 7.60
Overall rating:
If you look at Berlin from satellite, a huge green spot immediately catches your eye. This is Berlin-Tempelhof Airport, which operated from 1923 to 2008. 

Berlin Tempelhof Airport
Berlin Tempelhof Airport ©Yuriy Buriak

In its first decades of operation, the airport was one of the largest in the world. The modern terminal was built between 1936 and 1941. The building with an area of 284 thousand square meters and a length of 1.2 km, was the largest in the world at the time.

The airport became most famous during the Cold War, when it served as an air bridge during the Soviet blockade of West Berlin. In 1948-1949 planes took off and landed every 90 seconds, delivering food and fuel. In fact, this is how the Cold War began.

At the moment the airport is used for various purposes, for example, as the largest refugee reception center in the country. Some areas of the terminal are free to enter, and there are guided tours of the entire terminal.

Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin
Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin ©Yuriy Buriak


Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin
Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin ©Yuriy Buriak


Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin
Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin ©Yuriy Buriak


Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin
Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin ©Yuriy Buriak

But there is nothing on the airfield at the moment. It is just a huge open area where you can walk or ride a bike. The area is 355 hectares, in fact, it is the largest city square in the world, although officially it is a "park". For comparison, wikipedia says that the largest square in the world, Xinghai, covers an area of 110 hectares.

Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin
Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin ©Yuriy Buriak


Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin
Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin ©Yuriy Buriak


Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin
Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin ©Yuriy Buriak


Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin
Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin ©Yuriy Buriak


Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin
Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin ©Yuriy Buriak

Attempts to develop the airfield were made several times and each time they were met with massive resistance from activists in favor of preserving the park. There was even a referendum. What park, hello? It's just a huge and completely empty place, without a single tree. Completely useless and not used in any way.

Such protests look strange to me, considering that we ourselves live in a new neighborhood that is being built on reclaimed land. It's also possible to build modern residential neighborhoods here, especially considering the huge housing problem in Berlin, where people can't find an apartment for months. One of the runways can be kept for history.

Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin
Tempelhof Airfield in Berlin ©Yuriy Buriak

Because of its unusual architecture, the airport has often appeared in movies, including many blockbusters.

The Hunger Games (2015)
The Hunger Games (2015) ©@


Equilibrium (2002)
Equilibrium (2002) ©@


Valkyrie (2008)
Valkyrie (2008) ©@


Atomic Blonde (2017)
Atomic Blonde (2017) ©@

Getting there: If you want to get inside the terminal, the subway U Platz der Luftbrücke. If you want to get to the airfield, then S-Bahn / U-Bahn Tempelhof is more convenient.
Tags, Germany: museum, stroll

Tags, all countries: museum, stroll
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