Dec 29, 2021
Would premium class service encourage more rich people to take public transport? Housing activists score a temporary victory trying to squat an empty building. Why do the moving sidewalks at BER airport not move?
New Year’s Eve is effectively cancelled with limits of 200 people for indoor events and a ban on dancing in clubs. Much like last year, fireworks have been restricted but not banned outright. Sales are highly restricted and around 50 areas have been declared fireworks free. Jöran would prefer an outright ban as he now has a dog who will be terrified by the noise.
Berlin’s new double-decker buses have gone into service. They have wifi and USB ports, which the BVG says helps reduce vandalism because "The youth are so busy with their phones, that they hardly get any other ideas." Unfortunately the new buses are diesel powered, an anachronistic choice.
A recent study published by the World Economic Forum, the Boston Consulting Group and Switzerland’s University of St Gallen suggests the implementation of a “first class” option for Berlin’s public transportation system. According to their models wealthy Berliners currently commuting from low density outlying areas via car would switch to public transportation by €10 bookable seats featuring such luxuries as comfortable seats and reliable internet. We have our doubts.
The SPD’s Fraziska Giffey has become Berlin’s first elected woman mayor, but not the first woman to run the city. Louise Schroeder ran the city from 1947 to 48, though she was appointed rather than elected. And East Berlin also had a woman leader, Ingrid Pankraz, for a few days in 1990. These women have been ignored by most media covering Giffey’s election.
More than half of BER airport’s travelators (aka moving sidewalks) are out of action. The reason? Most of the travelators and escalators were installed in 2011 and sat unused for almost a decade. The hardware deteriorated, making them unusable. Now they have to be replaced.
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