August 5, 2021

Berlin TXL – Handover of keys


  • Launch of Berlin TXL – The Urban Tech Republic & Schumacher Quartier
  • 60,000 keys change hands
  • Interim balance of the explosive ordnance clearance
  • Guided tours, information point and events in summer
  • Start of space allocation and interim uses
  • Projects until the end of 2022 and outlook for 2027
  • The landscape space of the Tegeler Stadtheide

Berlin, 5 August 2021 – In a symbolic handover of the keys, the Governing Mayor of Berlin, Michael Müller, today handed over the site of the former Tegel Airport to Tegel Projekt GmbH. The development of the after-use projects, Berlin TXL-The Urban Tech Republic & Schumacher Quartier, can begin. One of the largest urban development projects in Europe is thus being implemented.

Over a period of about 20 years, not only a completely new district will be created on the 500-hectare site, but also Berlin’s model for the city of tomorrow: a climate-neutral, low-car and water-sensitive residential quarter for more than 10,000 people and a research and industrial park specialising in urban technologies with a university campus, in addition to a 150-hectare landscape area, which will be developed, managed and taken responsibility for by the state-owned Grün Berlin GmbH. The public discussion process about the future of the vacated site began back in 2008. Since then, several thousand Berliners have contributed to the brainstorming process at citizens’ events, site conferences or mobile dialogue offerings, and six international planning teams developed the master plan. On this basis, Tegel Projekt GmbH worked out the overall concept and pushed ahead with the planning and official approval processes so that implementation can now begin directly.

Michael Müller, Governing Mayor of Berlin, said on the occasion of the handover of the keys: “Tegel Airport has done great service for Berlin. It was part of the Berlin Airlift 73 years ago. With the standard-setting architecture by Gerkan, Marg and Partners, TXL stood for decades for the departure into the world and for free Berlin, a piece of identity in the north of the city. Today, a new chapter is being opened for Tegel, one that once again tells of new beginnings, one that can become the symbol of Berlin in the 21st century. I am pleased to seal the transfer of the former airport to Tegel Projekt GmbH today with the symbolic handover of the keys and to give the starting signal for this new beginning.”

Sebastian Scheel, Senator for Urban Development and Housing and Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Tegel Projekt GmbH, stated: “We are very pleased that we are now officially the landlord of this exciting urban area. In the last few years, we have by no means waited, but have taken the planning of the future into our own hands. We have dedicated ourselves to intensive planning processes to show what it means to convert sites and large functional buildings and make them fit for the future. With the Urban Tech Republic, we are now developing one of the largest economic and infrastructure projects in Germany, and with the Schumacher Quartier, the world’s largest urban timber construction quarter and sponge city project with over 5,000 flats – affordable, green and liveable.” “If we want to make the future liveable, we have to start with the cities. And when we build new things, we don’t build against nature, but with it. Berlin TXL is geared to be a showcase, an experimental workshop for the human- and nature-friendly city of the future. Our team can’t wait to finally get started,” said Dr. Philipp Bouteiller, Managing Director of Tegel Projekt GmbH, and Gudrun Sack , Managing Director of Tegel Projekt GmbH added: “The idea of resource-saving, smart neighbourhood development is being pushed far ahead in Berlin TXL. In the next few years, we want to set a benchmark here in terms of sustainability and digitalisation and dare to do a lot of new things. We have the know-how and the technological solutions, the plans are mature, peppered with over 140 individual innovations. In view of our 30,000 directives and regulations in Germany, new construction requires above all perseverance, patience and persistence. We are prepared for that.”

60,000 keys change hands

The building ensemble designed by the architects Gerkan, Marg und Partner and completed in 1975 will be preserved and will form the future heart of the Urban Tech Republic after renovation and conversion in accordance with the preservation order. Since May, Flughafen Berlin Brandenburg GmbH and Tegel Projekt GmbH have exchanged several 100 gigabytes of digital documents and extensive specialist archives for the purpose of documenting the history of the building and as a repository of knowledge for all questions relating to the fabric of the building and the operation of the technical facilities. As of today, a total of 59 buildings including approx. 60,000 keys, a good 42 km of water pipes, around 10 km each of comprehensive electricity and heating/cooling networks, the complete communication and operating technology with lifts, ventilation and locking systems, fire protection, lightning protection and emergency power systems as well as lighting including the meter systems and maintenance concepts have been taken over.

Interim balance of the explosive ordnance clearance

In May 2021, Tegel Projekt GmbH began the clearance of explosive ordnance in the area of the future central construction site access road on Kurt-Schumacher-Damm, east of the runways. To date, 80% of this area of approximately 22,000 m2 has been cleared; explosive ordnance clearance has been granted for 17,600 m2. 28,000 m3 of soil were moved for this purpose and temporarily stored in 62 piles of 500 m3 each on the southern runway. The work is proceeding according to plan and will be completed by September. So far, the 16-member exploration team has found 350 pieces of ammunition weighing almost 900 kg and almost 30,000 kg of ammunition scrap. The explosive ordnance recovered consists mainly of grenades, incendiary bombs and close-range ordnance. Most of them were taken to the Grunewald explosion site and defused there. Four finds that could not be transported were detonated by the Berlin police directly on site. There were small-scale closures in a radius of about 300 metres; no evacuations or interruptions of road traffic or the underground were necessary. Clearance of the first construction phase in the Schumacher Quarter will begin in August and of the southern access road, coming from the General Ganeval Bridge, from the autumn. This work is expected to be completed by the end of 2022. In the area of the former airfield – in the future landscape area – the clearance of explosive ordnance by Grün Berlin is expected to begin in the third quarter of this year.

Guided tours, information point and events in summer

Before the former airport turns into a large construction site, an open day was to take place this summer; a unique experience on the airfield for all Berliners. Due to a pandemic, this major event cannot take place. So that many people can still enjoy this special place, guided tours will take place from 14 August, every Tuesday and from Thursday to Sunday. The two-hour outdoor walks on the airport grounds start at 2 p.m. or 4 p.m. and can be booked in the next few days at

From 16 August, Tegel Projekt GmbH will be welcoming guests at the Infopunkt in the airport’s former administration building on Mondays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and Wednesdays from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. and providing information about the plans for Berlin TXL (

In addition, the airport will once again be experienced by several thousand people at events: on 7 August as part of the Freedom Dinner on the runway, from 21 August to 5 September at the Sonambiete sound art festival in Terminals A and B, and in the second half of September at a major rbb art event on the apron.

Start of space allocation and interim uses

With the takeover of the existing buildings, the interim uses of offices and workshops at the former airport are gradually getting underway, as is the marketing of the commercial and industrial plots for the first construction phase and the leasing of selected spaces for profile-compliant events and motif uses. The allocation procedures for the plots of the Schumacher Quarter are largely defined; interested building groups and housing cooperatives can find out about the requirements and the process at a marketplace event at the end of the year. The first concept procedures for the housing plots are expected to start in the first quarter of 2022. All plots in Berlin TXL will be rented out or granted under heritable building rights; no sales will take place.

Projects until the end of 2022

After taking over the site and ensuring operator responsibility, temporary construction roads and access roads will be made and construction logistics set up at the beginning of next year. The ongoing explosive ordnance clearance and initial demolition work, initially in the area of the taxiway bridge, are necessary measures for all immediately subsequent new construction activities in the Urban Tech Republic. Deep-lying rainwater channels and protective pipe routes are being created to lay the technical infrastructure. In addition, a large sleeper structure will be built next to the General Ganeval Bridge for the implementation of the stormwater management concept. In structural engineering, preparations are beginning for interim uses in the airport annexes as well as construction measures in the former administration building for the Infocentre as a central contact point for visitors and “base camp” Tegel Projekt GmbH. In addition, the data platform and geodata infrastructure for Berlin TXL will be built and gradually put into operation by the end of 2022.

Outlook for 2027

Provided the planning and construction process runs smoothly, the first construction phases will be completed in 2027: The first tenants will then move into their new flats in the Schumacher Quarter; the education campus and the central neighbourhood park will also be completed by then. In the area of the Urban Tech Republic, building plots are available for business settlements and a large part of the redevelopment and conversion work will have been completed. The Startup and Congress Centre will open in the former reception terminal B, and the Berlin University of Applied Sciences will start teaching in terminal A with 13 degree programmes. The Berlin Fire and Rescue Services Academy moves into the hangars.

Prof. Dr. Werner Ullmann, President of Beuth University of Applied Sciences Berlin: “From the field of urban technologies, 2,500 of our students will settle at the Berlin TXL campus, among others in the study programmes of architecture, horticultural phytotechnology, renewable energies, urban plant and open space management as well as electromobility. Our goal here is to develop technology to optimise infrastructures and living conditions – taking into account sustainability, resource conservation and the use of renewable energies.”

Karsten Göwecke, Permanent Representative of the State Fire Director: “The former Tegel Airport as the new location of our Berlin Fire and Rescue Service Academy offers the opportunity to further improve our level of training as well as to increase our training capacities. In future, training will be possible regardless of the weather and even closer to reality. The Berlin Fire Brigade is proud to find a place in the Urban Tech Republic and is already looking forward to the move – even if it will still take a few years. Now it is time to implement the planning of the past years. I would like to thank everyone involved for this.

The landscape space of the Tegeler Stadtheide

Where aeroplanes used to take off, Grün Berlin will develop and operate a unique green leisure and recreation area for Berlin in the coming years. The Senate Department for the Environment, Transport and Climate Protection has entrusted Grün Berlin with the task of taking over the necessary development and safeguarding measures for the Tegeler Stadtheide landscape area. The 150-hectare area encloses the protected transitional area between the new urban quarters in the south and east of the former airport site and the landscape protection areas of Flughafensee and Jungfernheide that already exist in the north and west. The aim is to create an open space that brings together nature, life and work in a qualitative and sustainable way.


Tegel Projekt GmbH

The state of Berlin has commissioned Tegel Projekt GmbH with the development and management of Berlin TXL. The state-owned company employs 64 people. Among other things, they deal with the planning for the building construction and the technical, energy and traffic infrastructure as well as with the preparation of sales and the communication of the project to the public.


August 5, 2021

Contact form

We process personal data, in particular your e-mail address, in order to process your contact request. You can find more information about the processing and your rights in our privacy policy information