… and, not only by Berlin standards, a smooth childbirth (considering the shape) after a model pregnancy: A time span of a mere 22 months separated groundbreaking from completion of the CityCube – the capital’s brand new trade fair and congress venue. Its organism was jogged to life upon its inauguration on May 5th, 2014, after the very last missing module had been implanted into the building’s core. The symbolic heart was solemnly inserted by Berlin’s Governing Mayor, Klaus Wowereit in concert with Messe Berlin’s CEO, Dr. Christian Göke. „A cube is born“, the motto chosen for the opening ceremony, could not have been more befitting. The stylish venue is laid out to host events for up to 11,000 participants.
“The CityCube provides another boost for Berlin in its role as an expanding international venue for trade fairs and congresses“, Klaus Wowereit, the Governing Mayor of Berlin, declared . “This ultra-modern, new building has the capacity to hold large-scale events. Technically, the CityCube is state-of-the-art. I wish Messe Berlin good luck with this new building and the city every success as a trade fair venue.“
Alive and kicking
The CityCube Berlin has been erected adjacent to Berlin ExpoCenter City’s southern entrance close to Jafféstraße S-Bahn station. Two main floors, flexible walls, a wide variety of conference rooms and the neighbouring exhibition grounds should satisfy the needs of all types of congresses and fairs. The venue, which already reports substantial bookings for the years ahead, replaces the aging – and ailing – ICC (International Congress Centre).
Since ICC’s opening back in 1979, the impressive edifice, whose distinctive aluminium façade resembles a giant space ship, is rightly considered one of West Berlin’s major landmarks. Soaring operating expenses justified it being closed this spring – regardless of the prevailing nostalgia the enormous structure is shrouded in. As estimated rehabilitation measures would devour hundreds of millions of euros, the ICC’s final fate remains a mystery for the public. Private investors do not seem to be in sight (yet).
Dr. Christian Göke, Chief Executive Officer of Messe Berlin GmbH: “We have succeeded in moving every event from the ICC Berlin to the CityCube Berlin without losing a single customer.“
Photo credit: Messe Berlin
German capital still sans new airport
No sarcastic references, please, to the continuing building phase of a capital airport originally planned to be opened mid 2012 and which has seemingly been mysteriously jinxed with the wicked spell of a never-ending loop of shortcomings and claims. Luckily, passengers arriving to the city are sustainably in love with good old tiny Tegel airport just a short taxi ride away from the city centre. They would much rather keep it forever (together with its cute little conveyor belt) – had it not been alarmingly stretching in the seams for a long while.
Albeit: The world has issued Berlin a Straight-A certificate not far from a jester’s licence. No way would visitors flocking in from all latitudes of the globe be deterred from attesting the German capital top grades in all conceivable disciplines. Posh five-star hotel premises or basic pensions, elegant shopping malls as opposed to shabby street markets, food outlets from snack to gourmet at bespoke prices, elegant plazas next to run-down courtyards that miraculously escaped the rampant restoration hype after Germany’s reunification two and a half decades ago:
Berlin has it all and it has it now for everyone to serve themselves from a rich and diverse urban platter.
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