Spreepark: A postmortem

Filed 2/4/2018 |
I ran past Spreepark today and was distraught to see what the city (Grün Berlin) has already done to it. Trees around the perimeter have been cut down and all the foliage has been hacked away – effectively leaving nowhere to hide for anyone who manages to get past the sturdy green imposing fence.
The flip side of this destruction is that passers-by can now get a good overview of the whole site without having to sneak in or pay for one of the tours they hope to lure you into.
Quite what you’d be looking at on a tour is beyond me as it’s clear that most of the main attractions are gone. The mammoth disappeared before Grün Berlin took over. (If anyone knows where it is, please leave a note in the comments or send an email. I mean, it can’t be easy to hide a giant woolly mammoth!)
The iconic Ferris wheel is still there, but I doubt they’ll let you have a go on that. The buildings are sealed off. And paying into a funpark where you’re not allowed go on any of the rides? Doesn’t sound like much fun to me.
The last remaining Tyrannosaurus (no, not Michael Müller – he’s still the mayor doing his best to destroy the city) is still lying stricken on its side, but Grün Berlin has put a fucking fence around it! They must think he’s like the last male northern rhino, but like efforts to bring the species back through cloning, IVF stem cell science or gene editing, they’ll find no matter what they do that it just won’t be the same.
For Spreepark’s best days are behind it. Any era before – whether as the GDR’s VEB Kulturpark Plänterwald, the Witte family’s Spreepark, or the abandoned funpark we all know and love – will be better than what Grün Berlin has planned for it.
“We want to develop the first European art and culture park here,” Christoph Schmidt told the Berliner Morgenpost in February. “It wasn’t clear what needs this place could satisfy.”
Here’s an idea Christoph: a FUNPARK! There. You can have that one for free.
Apparently they invited the neighbors round for a chat and “hardly anyone wants a noisy bustling amusement park, as Norbert Witte last operated there.” I beg to differ!
But of course what Christoph doesn’t say is that Grün Berlin, being a state-owned company, wants to develop whatever the cheapest and shittiest option may be. Too much taxpayers’ money – billions and billions and billions (as Trump likes to say when he’s counting his lies) – has already been wasted on BER, the new Berlin airport that will never be completed due to levels of corruption and incompetence that make Brexiteers look like professionals.
No doubt the plans to turn Spreepark into an “art and culture park” will fall flat on their two faces, too. There’ll be dinosaurs roaming BER and planes landing in Spreepark if the city’s plans go as they usually do.
Meanwhile, the tours of Spreepark are already underway at weekends for anyone whose curiosity is not satisfied by looking through the fence. The fence is decorated with invites in three languages(!) warning visitors that trespassing is prohibited, as indeed most things are in Germany.
But this is Berlin, where thankfully such things are ignored – much to chancellor-wannabe Jens Spahn’s displeasure. (We’re fucked if he ever gets in charge.)
You could of course still hop over or under the fence, though there was a security guard in a prominent red car driving beside the perimeter today – and there’s nowhere left to hide. Perhaps it’s a good thing the mammoth managed to get away after all.

For more on Spreepark, its roller-coaster history and stranger-than-fiction story, check the main post: https://www.abandonedberlin.com/2010/04/spreepark-and-how-to-get-in.html
The photos here are just shitty ones taken with my phone as I don’t lug my camera gear around when I’m training for marathons to raise money for Syria (hint, hint). But I’ll go back this week and update with proper camera-taken photos.
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2 comments

Did you mean to say "has already done to it" in the first sentence or was that phrasing intentional?

Corrected! Wasn't intentional. Thanks for pointing it out!

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