Tempelhof International Airport
The airport was a part of Albert Speer's plan for the reconstruction of Berlin. It turned out to be the largest built entity worldwide. During the Soviet blockade in 1948/49, the Berlin Airlift operated from here, turning Tempelhof into a symbol of a free Berlin. The 400 m long flight gate hall has no central supports. The hangars directly join both sides of the hall, forming a curved building with a length of 1200 m. The front is structured by staircase towers at intervals of 70 m. The façade is clad with shell limestone panels, dominated by endless rows of windows. So many times Tempelhof has made arriving in Berlin a thoroughly enjoyable experience for me. Each time my plane taxied right up to the building and I could get out, sheltered from the weather by the huge canopy. After a short walk through an amazingly simple and luminous hall, I found myself right in the heart of Berlin. As of October 2008, when Tempelhof is due to close, arriving in Berlin will never be the same again.