“En route to failure,” “Money pit in the hinterland,” and “Germany’s most unnecessary airport.” Those were just some of the headlines German media used to cover the opening of the country’s latest airport in the small town of Calden, in the state Hesse about 15 kilometers outside the central German city Kassel, on April 4. During the opening ceremony, Directing Manager Jörg Ries made a tongue-in-cheek reference to the country’s biggest building site disaster, the planned airport in Berlin. “We’ve finished,” he said, stressing that in contrast to the massive project in the German capital, his airport had been opened at least. Overall, Kassel-Calden Airport cost considerably more than planned, coming in at 270 million euros ($350 million dollars) rather than the initial 150 million euros estimated. But it’s no secret that while there is always high demand for Berlin’s airports, it’s far from clear whether Kassel will attract enough passengers to justify being built. On the opening day, some 30 passengers made use of the airport. The next flight to Antalya, Turkey, which was scheduled for the following day, was cancelled because only six passengers wanted to fly from Kassel. In the trial period, staff tested for situations with… Read full this story
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