Die Flughafengesellschaft FBB betreibt den Flughafen Berlin Brandenburg Willy Brandt (BER) mit seinen drei Terminals. Berlin ist der drittgrößte Flughafenstandort in Deutschland; gemessen an den ankommenden und abfliegenden Passagieren (ohne Umsteiger) sogar der größte. Die Flughäfen Schönefeld und Tegel fertigten im Jahr 2019, vor der Coronavirus-Pandemie, rund 35,65 Millionen Passagiere ab. Für das Jahr 2020 rechnet die Flughafengesellschaft mit insgesamt rund neun Millionen Passagieren.
The airport company Flughafen Berlin Brandenburg GmbH (FBB) operates Berlin Brandenburg Willy Brandt Airport (BER) with its three terminals. Berlin is the third biggest airport location in Germany and ranks first in terms of origin and destination traffic (not counting connecting passengers). In 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic, the airports in Schönefeld and Tegel handled around 35.65 million passengers. For 2020, the airport company expects a total of around nine million passengers.
32 Mr Mehdorn, the new Berlin Brandenburg Airport, BER, should have gone online well over a year ago. When will you announce the opening date? Hartmut Mehdorn: It depends how quickly we complete the remaining work with our fasttrack programme SPRINT. We have reached an agreement with our Supervisory Board to have a comprehensive plan in place by autumn, including strategy, business plan, date and cost development for the next years. Until then, we still have a lot to do in terms of securing such a plan. You were appointed CEO in March. What has happened since then? Hartmut Mehdorn: Immediately after taking up the position of CEO in mid March 2013 I put together a team of around 70 people from across the company for the fast-track programme SPRINT. This team has been working in an open-plan office directly on the construction site since 1 May. Each unfinished area on the construction site is assigned a module manager. These managers are tasked with implementing the points derived from a detailed survey of the construction site directly on site and monitoring their execution. They also have clearly defined roles and responsibilities regarding the work to be carried out in their area. Cost management decisions or overlapping modules are discussed on site with members of the Project Gate 70 The English Pages „It would be a good thing if we all just took a little bit more relaxed view of things.“ Interview with Airport-Chairman Hartmut Mehdorn. Management Office (PMO). This consists of an external body of committed experts. If in doubt, members of the PMO can get in direct contact with management. I’m also on site every day. This is one campus where we neither send emails nor make phone calls – we talk directly to one another. And then document any decisions made immediately. So have you made any progress on the construction site? Hartmut Mehdorn: Yes, we have. But we must and will pick up speed in the coming weeks. Your proposal to open BER in stages has met with opposition from politicians. Hartmut Mehdorn: Not all of them. We are working on putting all finished buildings into operation. What can possibly be wrong with that? I, for one, have learnt in the first few weeks of working here that putting a new airport into operation is just as complex as building it. Which is why I questioned whether opening the airport in stages could minimise the risks. We still have Tegel Airport and the old Schönefeld Airport. The chairman of the Supervisory Board, Minister President Platzeck, has meanwhile said that nothing is unthinkable. However, ultimately, the decision should be made by the shareholders, i.e. the states of Berlin and Brandenburg as well as the Federal Republic of Germany. You have been both applauded and booed for proposing to keep Tegel Airport open after the opening of BER. While Tegel fans in the west of the city are cheering, the majority of politicians are shaking their head. Hartmut Mehdorn: I’m neither nostalgic nor an ideologist. We simply can’t afford to rule out anything. That’s why I believe the automatic closure of Tegel no later than six months after the opening of BER is hanging over us like a constant threat which could potentially risk the swift and smooth operation of BER. No more, no less. It seems public opinion is now being reinforced that BER will already have reached its capacity limit by the time it opens. How would you respond to this criticism? Hartmut Mehdorn: These are the words of so-called experts, who are in no position to evaluate the reality of the situation or planned processes at BER. I think it would help if everyone would just calm down a bit. We should just see what happens. Instead of immediately saying this and that isn’t going to work all the time. Incidentally: Tegel handles four times as many visitors as originally planned on opening. This interview was conducted by Peter Hauptvogel.
Gate 70 The English Pages More than Just Peking Duck Culinary diversity in China’s capital. No meal is so closely associated with China’s capital as is Peking Duck. The “Kaoya” tastes best only when it is really crispy. To accomplish that, it is hung in a special oven where it is roasted for several hours. The skin is the best part and is served by the cook at the table, with a special sauce, leeks and plum brandy. The meat itself is served as the main dish with side dishes. Of course you do not eat such a bird alone. Actually you should always dine out with a number of people in China. Because eating in the Peoples’ Republic is a communal event. Only with a group of people can you experience the diversity of the menu. Traditionally, one person orders for everybody and then also takes care of the bill. In a group of colleagues it would be the boss or in the family the eldest in the group. But if you think that Peking Duck is the only highlight of the Northern Chinese cuisine, you would be mistaken. The hot and spicy Mongolian mutton fire pot “Shuan Yangrou” is typical for the region and ideal for Peking’s cold winters. Thin slices of lamb are cooked in a pot of boiling water in the middle of the table. Don’t expect rice to be served. You will not find it served with the fire pot any more so than with the Peking Duck. Sure you’ll find it on the menu, but in China’s capital they traditionally serve noodles and pasta. Even if most of the traditional Chinese meals do contain meat, the vegetarian is not left to their own devices. Tofu, for instance. There is every imaginable type: fried, grilled, steamed or marinated. There is even a puff pastry variety where thin slices of tofu are filled with cabbage or mushrooms. The “Chou doufu”, an odorous tofu whose aroma, if you so will, takes some getting used to for Westerners. For The „slow-paced“ Berlin! Berlin, of course, is a paradise for anyone who loves the beginning more than the end. The uncertainty more than the familiar. And that is why life pulses so intensively between Alexanderplatz and Kudamm in a colorful confusion of visions, joie de vivre and energy. But there is also the dark side. And the time researcher Karlheinz Geißler puts it so succinctly, “We try to pack more and more into our time.” Great that Berlin, as is so frequently the case, does not only have one side of the story. Berlin is not just stress, but relaxation as well. Not just “rat race”, but “slow-paced”. A good example of the “slow-paced” is Tegel. Here, the clocks tick at another speed. Here, people still say hello to one another when they pass on the street. Pedestrians bend down, shaking their heads, when they see a cigarette butt tossed carelessly on the sidewalk. And maybe it is precisely this form of suburban wellbeing that assures that, for instance, the Greenwich Promenade in Alt-Tegel still ranks as one of Berlin’s most popular places for excursions. The Northern Berliners love their Greenwich Promenade, which they also pronounce something along the lines of “green vitch”. With a visit to Tegel you might the adventurous, however, the spicy taste will not be so quickly forgotten. Katrin Knauth Hainan Airlines | www.hnair.com quickly forget that you are in the same city that has Berlin-Mitte. Walking along beneath the rows of sycamores that line the shores of Tegel Lake, it is easy to dream of the big, wide world. The pleasure boats docked along the shore provide the atmosphere of a resort. Long before Gorbachev, it was known that words can change lives. “I do” spoken at the altar and the titillating expectancy of a wedding party are certain to have such an impact on the future. Which brings us to St. Peter and Paul in Nicholskoe. For this is not only Berlin’s favorite church for excursions, but also one of the most frequently booked churches for weddings. And anybody who has ever been here and witnessed how the church and the Havel landscape practically melt into one another, they know that any bride who celebrates her wedding ceremony in the church and steps out onto the terrace above the Havel is sure to feel like the most beautiful woman in the word. And in the Blockhaus next door, coffee and cake are served as they have been since the days of the Kaiser. Here, the clocks have not been ticking at a different pace for years, they stopped ticking decades ago. Alexander Remler 33