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Report - Spreepark, Berlin 23rd December 2015

Discussion in 'European and International Sites' started by General Mooch, Dec 25, 2015.

  1. General Mooch

    General Mooch 28DL Full Member
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    Spreepark was an entertainment park in the north of the Plänterwald in the Berlin district Treptow-Köpenick (formerly part of the GDR-controlled East Berlin). It was also well known by its earlier name Kulturpark Plänterwald.

    The entertainment park was opened in 1969 as Kulturpark Plänterwald, covering an area of 29.5 hectares. The area is situated in the north of the Plänterwald, next to the river Spree. It was the only constant entertainment park in the GDR, and the only such park in either East or West Berlin.

    The VEB Kulturpark Berlin was completed in 1991, after the reunification, by mixed municipal authorities in Berlin. Out of a total of seven applicants, the Spreepark Berlin GmbHcompany received the contract. Crucially, the references of Norbert Witte of the company were not properly checked.

    Under the Spreepark GmbH some new attractions were added and visitor numbers reached 1.5 million per annum. Later the concept was changed and the park was gradually transformed into a more Western-style amusement park. An entrance fee (adults: 29 DM, children: 27 DM) covering all individual attractions was now charged, instead of visitors paying for each individual ride, as had previously been the case.

    The asphalted surface around the Ferris wheel was taken up and converted into a water landscape. Roller coasters, two game water courses, a stage, a Western town and an English village were later added to the park.

    Since 1999 the park has had to cope with large debts. The increase in the admission fee to 30 DM per person and a lack of parking space contributed to a drop in visitor numbers until in 2001 only 400,000 visitors entered the park

    In 2001 Spreepark GmbH announced that they were insolvent

    On 18 January 2002, Norbert Witte, together with his family and closest coworkers moved to Lima in Peru. They shipped six attractions (Fliegender Teppich, Butterfly, Spider, Baby-Flug, Wild River, and Jet Star) in 20 ship containers, having been allowed to do so by the authorities who believed they were being sent for repair

    Since 2002 the park has not opened for visitors. In August 2002 the park was declared completely insolvent. Debts at a level of €11,000,000 remained and the area was allowed to fall into disrepair. The Ferris wheel still stands, but has not operated since the park's closure, likewise, the remains of other attractions can still be found on-site.

    In 2011 a scene for the action film Hanna was filmed at the park, as well as the music video for the single "Run Dry" by German band Sizarr

    Norbert Witte failed in his attempt to run a "Lunapark" in Lima. On 19 May 2004 he was sentenced to seven years in jail for attempting to smuggle 180 kg of cocaine with a value of £14 million from Peru to Germany in the masts of the Fliegender Teppich (Flying Carpet) ride. In October 2006 a Peruvian court sentenced Wittes' son, Marcel Witte, to 20 years for drug smuggling.

    Since 2011, guided tours have been offered to the public at restricted times

    In March 2014, the City of Berlin bought the Spreepark. Since then, no guided tours are offered anymore. The exact future of the amusement park is unclear

    On the evening of 10 August 2014, major parts of the park were destroyed in a fire. Reports indicated that firefighters discovered two blazes 200M apart that soon merged. This indicates the fires may have been deliberately set


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    Upon arrival, to my dissapointment, the area had been secured with quite a large green steel fence. Attatched to this fence was a sign that read "DO NOT ENTER! Vialators will be prosecuted! Guarding with dogs! Danger to life and limb!"



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    A little shaken by this sign, I proceeded.

    I followed the fence around, looking for a gap. Surrounding the park was a footpath where there were many dog walkers, runners and couples.

    After having followed the path around for about 20 minutes I came across a large gap that looked like it had been dug under the fence.



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    Not knowing quite how the general public would react to me climbing under the fence in front of them, I sat down on a fallen tree across the path from the gap, with the gap in my sights and waited.

    Two elderly German men spotted the gap under the fence, and had stopped to inspect it. I could tell from their gesticulations that they wanted to get in. I don't speak much German, but I could imagine them saying "We could get in there you know"


    The two elderly Germans passed and I had my chance. The coast was clear. I sprinted for the fence Colditz-Style and pulled myself under.

    I was in.



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    With the thought of Where Eagles Dare-style German Shepherd dogs tearing me limb from limb, I moved quickly.


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    [​IMG]



    I wasn't completely convinced that the area was actually guarded by life-threatening dogs, But nevertheless I didn't hang about.



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    I didn't quite manage to see everything I wanted, But I left with my legs.


    - General Mooch 25 Dec 2015

     
    #1 General Mooch, Dec 25, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2015
    ClaireM, girtrood, WildBoyz and 2 others like this.

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  2. Colonel mooch

    Colonel mooch 28DL Member
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    Nice report pal!
     
  3. Bolts

    Bolts 28DL Regular User
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    German Camelot? :D I mean, if those old guys could get in...
     
    #3 Bolts, Dec 25, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2015
  4. WildBoyz

    WildBoyz Is this the future?
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    That was a good read. Seen this one before in other reports, but I found your own story very amusing. A few more photos would have been welcome, but enjoyed the ones you did included.
     
  5. aim1

    aim1 28DL Member
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    Belive me, there are dogs (big ones)
     
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