The opening of Berlin’s new airport has been delayed until March next year – nine months after its originally planned debut.
In a statement released today (May 17) the airport said that Berlin Brandenburg would not be ready to open until March 17, 2013.
The new facility was originally due to open on June 3, replacing the German capital’s existing two airports: Tegel and Schoenefeld.
But this was delayed because of problems with the new airport’s automated fire safety measures. It was originally thought the delay would only last a couple of months (see online news May 8), but the airport now says that works will take until December to complete.
The statement said that “The new timeline is set to minimise the risk that the time available for inspections, approvals and certifications could potentially be insufficient.
“In addition, the risk would be too high to move the airport in winter due to adverse weather leading to operational restrictions.”
Lufthansa has already announced that it will be running its planned new services from the existing Tegel airport (see online news May 16).
Fellow German carrier Air Berlin has also said that it has assigned a taskforce to adapt its expanded flight schedules to the existing facilities at Tegel (see online news May 9).
As a result of the delays, the airport’s managing director of operations and constructions, Manfred Körtgen, is to leave the company, and the contract with project management company pg bbi is to be terminated.
Report by Rob Gill