A few years after planes stopped taking off from the historic (and at times controversial) Berlin Tempelhof Airport (Flughafen Berlin-Tempelhof), this summer, the centrally located city airport opened as a public park. So we had a picnic on an abandoned air field.
Vast fields, wide tarmacs, grass pushing through cracked asphalt – perfect for riding bikes, flying kites, walking a group of Dachshunde and meeting friends. Thanks to Andreas Rohde and Andreas Janke I joined a big group last weekend for a fun picnic right off the tarmac.
It felt a little odd to have a park that mostly lacks trees, bushes or hills – so you can see the entire park at once, which makes walking across it a little daunting. But zooming around on Marisa’s bike, I easily made it over to the empty airport building (once among the 20 largest buildings on Earth) and realized that the lack of trees is made up by the abandoned airplanes.
Two nights ago, I finally bought a bike (Summer, please don’t be over. People of Berlin, please don’t steal my bike.). Now I can’t wait to ride down to Tempelhof airport this weekend.
A few weeks ago California-based friend Jeff Israel sent this article from the LA Times which goes into more detail about the history and current politics regarding the airport/park.