Photo Report – Visiting the Tower of New Berlin Airport (BER)

Berlin Brandenburg Willy Brandt Airport (BER / EDDB), located south of Berlin (Germany), is the new international airport that is intended to replace Berlin Tegel Airport and Schönefeld Airport, to become the single commercial airport serving Berlin. Being under construction since already more than 6 years, the airport has still not been opened yet. Because of massive construction failures, design flaws and mismanagement the opening date was postponed many times and it’s still unclear when actually the new airport will be serving first passengers. Some experts even consider a partially reconstruction.
So come, that – located on the site of old Schönefeld Airport (SXF/EDDB) – this huge, newly constructed airport complex remains being unused. …

Unused except for one building – the tower.

Operating the tower of an abandoned airport? Doesn’t seem to make much sense, you might wonder. You’re right! Again, a case of mismanagement! Last year, the old tower of Schönefeld Airport (SXF) was already closed and replaced by the new one located on the new site, actually just before the airport opening was postponed again.

I had the chance to visit the new airport and to take an inside look into the tower. You can get a picture of the current situation in my following photo report. Enjoy.

Photo Report

Berlin Airport BER Terminal
Greeted by the main terminal…

Berlin BER Airport Ramp Finger
Berlin Airport BER Main Terminal Ramp
… and abandoned fingers on ramp B (Terminal)

Berlin Brandenburg Airport Tower
Heading straight accross ramp B and ramp D to the ATC tower.


Quite a remarkable building in modern, clean, industrial design.

Berlin Tower Building Apron
Entering the Berlin ATC tower building – view on ramp B and the Terminal.

Berlin Airport Under Construction
Yes, the airport is still under construction, that’s why safety has top priority.


Facilities to relax between shifts – sleeping rooms and a small gym.

berlin-brandenburg-airport-apron1
In northeast direction: Old (still open) airport Berlin Schönefeld (SXF) and Runway North (07L/35R), in foreground Ramp A, B & D of new Berlin Brandenburg Airport (BER) as well as parts of the terminal building.

berlin-brandenburg-willi-brandt-terminal
Terminal building.

berlin-brandenburg-airport-apron2
In southeast direction: Runway South (07R/25L) not in use, Ramp C and in foreground again Ramp B & D.

berlin-ber-a380-finger
Airbus A380 finger on Ramp B.

berlin-airport-west
Because the airport was planned way to small to handle the amount of flights after both Berlin airports will be closed, BER is going to be expanded. On this empty site in western direction an additional satellite terminal is going to be constructed.
This will cause new problems – Ramp B, D & E seem to be design to small. Experts believe that there will be not enough room for service vehicles to operate in the allowed safety distance to airplanes (200m).

Berlin Tower Bridge
A bridge was already incorporated into the tower design, allowing future ground traffic to make use of the space between both tower buildings.

Berlin Airport Construction Failure Door Steel Beam
Berlin Airport Construction Failure Door Steel Beam
Not only the airport layout got criticized by experts and media. Several thousand (!) construction failures have been noted. Some can be found in the tower building, too.
Like this massive supporting steel beam going straight through a door.

Berlin Airport Construction Failure Radiator
Or this shady mounting of a radiator.

Berlin Airport Construction Failure Stairs
Berlin Airport Construction Failure Stairs Tape
Tower controllers got disturbed by massive wind noise caused by stairs outside of the tower building. The lousy fix – tape! MacGyver would be proud!

By the way, every day an empty high speed train goes through the underground train station, just for ventilation of the tubes…

Berlin Airport Tower Smoker Area
Not really a flaw, but a bus stop as smoker area? Are you kidding?

Anyway, let’s continue with pictures of my visit of the actual tower.

Stairway to Berlin Tower
Stairway to heaven… kind of …

Berlin Brandenburg Tower
Berlin Brandenburg Tower
Berlin Brandenburg Tower

I hope that you liked my report and please feel free to leave a comment.

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