Improvements at Schönefeld and Tegel airports ahead of BER opening13.02.2013
“In view of the postponement of the opening date of BER, there is a need to improve Schönefeld and in particular Tegel“, said Matthias Platzeck, state premier of the federal state of Brandenburg and chairman of the supervisory board of the airport operating company following today’s meeting. “With today’s decision, we have paved the way for improvements at Schönefeld and Tegel to ensure a smooth transition until the opening of the new Berlin Brandenburg Airport.”
Other items on the agenda of today’s supervisory board meeting included the status of the construction work at BER and questions concerning senior level appointments.
Taking stock of BER continues
Taking stock of the BER project continues. COO Horst Amann said that it was still too early to set a new opening date. The crucial issue still is the fire protection system, in particular the fresh air supply in case of a fire. Mr Amann added: “Work is on-going with regard to the shafts in the ceiling and the cable trays. However, our focus is currently on the evaluation of the construction work and its consistency with the planning. This process will take several more months.“ Mr Amann also said that solutions have been developed for specific aspects of the fire protection system.
According to Mr Platzeck, the airport company is currently also assessing whether the capacity of BER should be expanded and whether the Northern runway (which is the runway of the existing Schönefeld Airport) should be refurbished ahead of the opening of BER. The airport has already commis-sioned a new traffic forecast and is also assessing all regulatory, operational, technical and financial aspects around these two points. Mr Platzeck: “The airport company has not yet come to a final conclusion concerning these two points but it is clear that we will not take any unnecessary risks with regard to the opening of BER.”
Wilhelm Bender appointed top advisor, Mr Troppmann leaves supervisory board
Investment in infrastructure, service and personnel
Over the past few weeks the airport operating company had assessed areas in need of improvement at the existing airports Schönefeld and Tegel, according to Mr Platzeck. The airport company has now been tasked with developing a list of individual measures as well as a detailed cost and time analysis.
The need for action concerns three areas:
- Infrastructure: The infrastructure at the existing airports Schönefeld and Tegel is showing signs of wear and tear. For instance, the cooling and heating systems, the building technology, the baggage system and the taxiways will require some investment.
- Service: A number of measures will be taken to improve the passenger experience, such as the installation of additional flight information screens, a deep cleaning of the terminal building, an refurbishment of existing toilet facilities and the installation of additional restrooms.
- Personnel: Over the coming months, the operating company will increase staff levels at Tegel to be able to respond quickly, should the need for maintenance and repair works arise.
Measures to address these issues will commence in the coming weeks. Furthermore the operating company will evaluate whether additional construction work may be necessary in order to improve the handling process at Tegel’s Terminal C.