Oberbaum, Berlin Wall and so on…

November 9th, 2014

Oberbaum, Berlin Wall and so on…Berlin-based bridge Oberbaumbrücke is a symbol for many things: Where nowadays cars, metros and tourists cross Spree River from north to south, was once the border between the East and the West. The former border strip was guided by the course of the river; a route, that today is famous for pleasure boat trips. The towers of Oberbaumbrücke are not only identity-establishing for the directly neighbouring club Watergate, but stand first and foremost for the vicinity of Berlin and Brandenburg. Also in my life Oberbaumbrücke played an important role, as it was my first contact with the West after the Berlin Wall fell down »»

Threesome – Prague’s Metro Network

October 29th, 2014

Threesome – Prague’s Metro NetworkIf it’s rush hour in Prague and you miss a metro train by an inch only, then you merely have to wait 115-150 seconds until the next train pulls into the station. That’s top-notch in Europe, in particular in the background of only 1.2 million people living in Prague. The trains of Pražské Metro bomb along three lines through the underground of the Golden City, connecting old as well as brand-new stations that tell the modern history of the Czech capital »»

One for All and All in One – Warsaw’s Underground

October 7th, 2014

One for All and All in One – Warsaw’s UndergroundFollowing the course of Vistula River, Poland’s one and only underground stops at 21 stations in Warsaw’s underground. Consisting of only one single line being in operation, about 370.000 people use the coaches shuttling along the 23.1 kilometres long track. Planning and design actually having started in the 1920’s finally saw and end when in 1995 Metro Warszawskie started operations. It belongs not only to the youngest undergrounds in Europe but also has officially one of the most beautiful stations in the world. Very soon its singlehood will change though as the start of second line operations already loom »»

The Tunnelbana Netherworlds of the Stockholm Metro

May 9th, 2014

The Tunnelbana Netherworlds of the Stockholm MetroWhat do Ebba, Knut, Greta and Elvis have in common? Correct: all of them are true blue, come across the “wrong” side and run in Stockholm’s underground solely. But what sounds a bit like a scattered group of weirdoes is actually black-blue, made of metal and dedicated to transport people: the Tunnelbana, Stockholm’s metro, where every of its coaches has its own name. Quite likeable, isn’t it? But the real gem of the Swedish metropolitan underground is the variety of its stations since in particular the subterranean stops are brought to the fore artistically making every stage telling a very own optically exciting story. »»

Avacha, Kamchatka’s Red Riding Hood

September 3rd, 2013

Avacha, Kamchatka’s Red Riding HoodAvachinskaya Sopka – colloquially also known as Avachinsky or Avacha – is the backyard volcano of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, the regional capital of Far East Russia’s volcano peninsula. It is a ~4000 years old Somma-type volcano, meaning it is growing and prospering inside the caldera of a historic fire mountain. The magma rising up inside the Avacha contains more iron ore than usual. That again reacts with the omnipresent magmatic gas carried along and iron oxides, in particular iron(III) oxide, emerge. Latter one dresses the volcano with a literally fiery red coat »»

East Germany’s Soviet Heritage – The Treptow War Memorial in Berlin

June 25th, 2013

East Germany’s Soviet Heritage – The Treptow War Memorial in BerlinAs a small boy I was pretty much impressed by the Soviet War Memorial being located in Berlin’s Treptower Park and even today that place has quite some impact. However, nowadays such a visit is generally voluntary than back in the days, as the whole school had got to show up there. Though, that wasn’t a loss as independent from the system one’s living in one could get a feeling for what history means, war stands for and what has to be prevented from happening again. The memorial site lies a bit hidden behind the trees of Treptower Park and only the granite triumphal arches give a hint what can be seen when going further. The war memorial played an important role when the Group of Soviet Forces in Germany (GSFG) backed out on June 25th 19 years ago »»

Berlin’s Olympia Stadium in Black and White

May 10th, 2013

Berlin’s Olympia Stadium in Black and WhiteMany of Berlin’s places of interest, no matter if built for “perpetuity” or perpetually not being accomplished, are often hard-wired to a single name. Ulbricht has his TV Tower, Wowereit his BBI airport desaster and Honecker dreamed of a 100 years lasting wall. In the 1930’s such dreams year-lasting-wise even had one more zero in the end and threw Germany as well as the rest of the world into turmoil. Only a few witnesses reminding of that time are left, for example Berlin’s mighty Olympiastadion, a massive stadium built by Werner March in the west of the city. Photographically I am interpreting its lines and geometry in dramatic contrasts and in Black and White only »»

East Germany’s Soviet Heritage – The mighty Wünsdorf garrison

February 25th, 2013

East Germany’s Soviet Heritage – The mighty Wünsdorf garrisonVillage of 6.000 souls versus military town with up to 75.000 soldiers – Back in the days the Soviets knew very well how to make use of Wünsdorf (Вюнсдорф), a settlement being located in Berlin’s south along the railroad leading to Dresden. Even if the whole territory is abandoned for several years now and completely fenced, it is possible to have a closer look at the heart of the complex, the today’s House of Officers, a building telling manifold stories of times when it was Army Sports School for the Nazi as well as even before for the emperor »»

East Germany’s Soviet Heritage – Vogelsang’s abandoned Military Garrison

February 1st, 2013

East Germany’s Soviet Heritage – Vogelsang’s abandoned Military GarrisonAfter World War II a huge area being located less than a 1 hour car drive away from the highway ring surrounding Berlin became one of Soviet Army’s most important military sites. This abandoned garrison is located near the city of Zehdenick, in the north of the village Vogelsang. At peak time up to 15.000 people lived and worked in the present-day ghost town; soldiers, their relatives as well as civil associates. Some of them controlled nuclear missiles pointing to the west – a piece of Cold War and living history »»

Kamchatka in the Net

December 18th, 2012

Interesting and informative links featuring the Russian peninsula in the Far East »»