Berlin doesn't know what to do with the famous Checkpoint Charlie
Since the fall of the Berlin Wall thirty years ago, the place has lacked a clear planning vision. The presence of actors disguised as Cold War soldiers was banned by the city on Monday.
A visit to Berlin is not complete without a detour to Checkpoint Charlie, the crossing point between East and West from 1961 to 1989; 4.5 million tourists flock to it every year. In October & nbsp; 1961, American and Russian tanks, ready for battle, fell into sight a few meters away.
Thirty years after the fall of the Wall, the City lacks a clear vision for the place. Everything is false there: the replica of the gatehouse, the panel "& nbsp; you leave the American sector & nbsp;" and the dozen actors disguised as soldiers, who took turns posing for cameras and stamping scraps of paper, for 3 to 4 €. After complaints from many tourists about the insistent, even aggressive, behavior of these actors, their presence was banned on Monday, November 4, by the City.
It remains to be seen what to do with these 9 & # 39; 100 & # 39; m2, where proliferate tourist cars, currywurst stands and vendors of fake military uniforms. The place looks cursed. In the 1990s, the area around the famous checkpoint was sold to American investors who wanted to build huge offices, but filed for bankruptcy without building much.
The town hall has built a temporary Cold War museum, a few meters from the Wall Museum, a private initiative which identifies the incredible means of passing from East to West.
Last year, a project supported by the town hall had provided luxury apartments, a Hard Rock hotel with spa and a real Cold War museum, for which the City would have paid significant rent. & Nbsp; The investor had branches in tax havens & nbsp; (link in German)… the town hall put an end to the negotiations and presented, in May, its own project. This provides social housing and less commercial space. Berliners remain cautious.
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