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BER Airport in Berlin: Federal government will hold onto new government terminal until 2035


BER opened in 2020 nine years late. Now the airport is to become a construction site again: the federal government is planning a representative government terminal for hundreds of millions - despite the existing terminal building.

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Airbus A350 in readiness for flight in front of the current government terminal at BER


Soeren Stache / dpa

Since October, Germany’s government representatives and state guests have been checking in and out of a terminal building at around 70 million euros at the new BER airport in Berlin, and Agriculture Minister Julia Klöckner was the first to land there.

But from the perspective of the federal government, this is only an interim building - it wants to stick to the construction of a new and representative government terminal.

This emerges from a response from the building ministry to a request from the FDP, which the news agency dpa reported.

This means that the new BER airport, which only opened at the end of October 2020 with a nine-year delay, could become a permanent construction site again in a few years.

The hangars for flight readiness, including apron and offices, are expected to be ready and handed over by 2032, said State Secretary for Construction Anne Katrin Bohle.

The new terminal with the protocol area, where state guests are received, could go into operation by 2035 at the latest.

The government terminal, a low-rise building made of wood and glass, should actually be ready in 2011.

Like the new airport in the capital, this project was also delayed.

Because those responsible for BER feared space problems, the federal government temporarily waived the intended location.

Since the terminal building now used by government representatives was therefore built elsewhere on the BER site, there are demands that the federal government use it permanently.

Most recently, the head of BER, Engelbert Lütke Daldrup, pleaded for abandoning the new government building and proposed an alternative that was 75 million euros cheaper.

2019 costs of at least 344 million euros are forecast

"The federal government is sticking to the planning and implementation of the new government airport," said Bohle.

"There are no plans to include the FBB interim building in the government airport." The subsequent use is a matter for the airport company.

She is considering handling business planes at the interim terminal.

For the final government airport, costs of at least 344 million euros were already announced in 2019, almost three times as much as originally planned.

Bohle did not commit himself.

"The costs are determined with the preparation of the current plan and are not yet available." At BER, the federal government's readiness to fly is to be brought together, which has so far used the Cologne-Bonn and Berlin-Tegel locations in addition to Schönefeld.

The FDP budget politician Christoph Meyer criticized that with better planning, the federal government could have saved operating costs of more than 33 million euros for the transition terminal.

In addition, the complete re-use of the former airport area in Tegel is blocked because the helicopters in readiness for flight remain there for the time being.

Meyer also doubts the government terminal schedule can be kept.

This also depends on how long the airport company still needs the designated location.

The old Schönefeld Airport is located there.

It remained connected to the network as Terminal 5 of BER because its new main terminal was insufficient for the expected number of passengers.

However, after the onset of the corona crisis, Terminal 5 is to be temporarily closed in two weeks.

Icon: The mirror

apr / dpa

Source: spiegel

All business articles on 2021-02-11

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