Let's use the ecological potential of Corona and transform our airports into green public places!
Climate change and the eco-crisis did not create a new consciousness for our planets. It needed a pandemic to restrict air traffic and reduce carbon dioxide emissions. Can we not use this ecological progress for the future and consider how to redesign and repurpose airports?
In 2020 a novel coronavirus caused a pandemic. From one second to the other planes came to a standstill. Bevor Corona, this was unthinkable in our global economic structure. Capitalism, neoliberalism, global trade routes do not allow breaks! In our system there was no space for slowdown! The virus tought us otherwise. On the occasion of the first Covid-19 wave and an undersupply with intensive care unites, we proposed to transform the newly constructed airport BER into a Covid-19-superhospital BER. The new airport in Berlin, which was under construction for more than 16 years, fits in perfectly with German politics but no longer into our ecological worldview. In the paralyzed world of political conceptions, the future seems to have been abolished until further notice. Airports around the world are symbols for a lavish lifestyle of exploitation, turning a blindeye to climate change, the spreading of the virus and the international trading routes that collapsed. So why don‘t we use this structure to fight the virus?
The existing airport offers untapped potential. The structure of an airport fits perfectly for temporary intensive care units and is perfectly isolated within the city. Crisis are always also chances! But instead of using the crisis as an opportunity for a sustainable social and ecological restructuring of our society, politics only react regressively. Instead of future oriented projects we only try to restore. During a crisis, it would be progressiv to consider other upcoming crises such as climate change and think about future-driven concepts. Are airports in times of climate change still without alternatives? After the pandemic we want to to transform airport runways into ecological, carbon dioxide free social places. A palace of social exchange!
Instead of 28,000,000 passengers a year (14,000,000,000kg carbon dioxide), our building will host 310,000 people (0kg carbon dioxide) and create a space of social interaction and joy.
The world after Corona doesn‘t has to look as the world before. But better!