Twenty-five years after its founding, the Allied Museum faces new challenges. In order to inform today’s public about the significance of peace, freedom and democracy and the part played by the Western Allies in promoting and preserving them, the Museum needs new approaches and a meaningful historic site. Tempelhof Airport, a powerfully symbolic place in the middle of the city that unites history, the present and the future, offers the proper framework.
By linking the exhibition with urgent contemporary questions, spectacular spatial design, impressive objects and innovative forms of dialogue with visitors, the New Allied Museum in Tempelhof will be a twenty-first-century museum. The planning for this major project is well underway. We expect to open at the new site in around ten years.
Democracy in the Cold War
The Allied Museum’s New Permanent Exhibition
The Allied Museum reflects a successful chapter in German history and evokes positive memories. The New Allied Museum’s exhibition in Tempelhof will explain how, after the abolition of the Nazi regime, and under Cold War circumstances, liberal democracy was established in Germany. The exhibition illuminates those developments with a focus on Berlin. It was here that the two social systems collided. And it was here that the Western Powers were willing to defend their rights, interests, and values with military might if necessary. That willingness was a guarantee of peace, freedom, and democracy for West Berlin.
A site of History
For the future of the allied museum
When the Soviet occupying power cut off basic provisions to West Berlin in June 1948, the Western powers set up an airlift two days later. For nearly one year, people in the encircled Western part of the city were supplied by the “candy bombers.” A central site of this impressive act of international solidarity was Tempelhof Airport. To this day, a memorial and the name of the square on which it stands recall this bridge of friendship.
The Western powers stayed in West Berlin for many years. Tempelhof remained the headquarters of the US Air Force, which also made the airport into a meeting place with Berliners living in the Western half of the city, whose freedom it defended until the fall of the Iron Curtain and the Berlin Wall.
EXPERIENCE AN EXTRAORDINARY HISTORIC BUILDING
at the allied museum
Tempelhof Airport, with its main building erected starting in 1934, was one of the first major airports in the world. Today, the facility is Europe’s largest monument, whose architectural particularities and complex history exert a powerful attraction. The New Allied Museum in historic Hangar 7 will make this special place both a stage for and a subject of its many-layered exhibition, allowing visitors to experience Tempelhof Airport on multiple levels: as architectural evidence of the Nazi regime, a symbolic site of freedom and a space for creativity, encounter and cooperation.
MORE THAN A MUSEUM
The Allied museum as a hotspot in a new urban Quarter
With its fascinating and socially relevant exhibitions, current programs and attractive food options, the Allied Museum will thus become a central address in the quarter around the former airport. It will be a meeting place for neighbors from the adjacent districts and not least for the many visitors to Tempelhof Field park. The site will be easy to reach, with excellent connections by public transportation.