An abandoned Berlin airport will undergo a massive redevelopment plan, and is set to become an environmentally-friendly hub. This will be made up of a technological research hub, residential district with housing for up to 10,000 people, and a huge nature reserve.
Tegel Airport was previously the fourth busiest airport in Germany, with over 24 million passengers in 2019. However, after a new airport was built, it was decided that Tegel should be redeveloped, rather than lay abandoned. The State of Berlin commissioned Tegel Projekt GMBH, a state-owned company to design and implement this new residential community and research hub.
The new development is set to begin building in late 2022, and The first residential district, named Schumacher Quartier is set to be complete by 2027. The residential area will prioritise bikes, with bike lanes and highways, with future plans for electric buses and a tram in the pipeline.
Each building will be covered in vertical gardens, which have a multitude of environmental benefits, including improving air quality and helping to insulate buildings. This will help to futureproof the building against global temperature rises, and also means less energy will be used by air conditioning.
Every building will also be fitted with solar panels to fulfill the community’s electricity needs. Rain will be captured with permeable pavements and rain gardens.
The housing won’t just be for the rich either. The state-sponsored company wants to appeal to people with low income, and will offer 5,000 students a place to live as well.
“In Berlin, as in many other cities, there is a shortage of affordable housing,” says Tegel Projekt GmbH chief executive officer Philipp Bouteiller in a statement. “This causes people with lower incomes to be pushed out of the inner cities.”
“Our vision is different: Berlin TXL should not be a place for a high-income clientele only, but a sustainable, liveable space for people of all ages and regardless of their income,” he continued.
The project will also see technological innovation, where the tech hub named The Urban Tech Republic will house as many as 1,000 businesses, including start-ups. Twenty-thousand people will work here in research, development and production.
To add to the green credentials of this development, 200 hectares will be reserved as a nature reserve. The project foresees itself being carbon-neutral, including the construction process, where they plan to use local timber.