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B. F. H.
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Tower and Flight Operations Building

The ensemble Flight Operations Building (Terminal Building) and American Control Tower today forms the important landmark of Schleissheim Airfield. Please support us to preserve this building for future generations. Our goal is to have the buildings restored to a state as they looked in the early sixties of the past century. They should be used as an expansion of the existing museum with main focus on American Aviation in Bavaria.

The Terminal Building with Tower in 1981, with the Freight Terminal visible in the background.
On the roof of the Freight Terminal is still the basement of the former Homing Areal.

Built in 1934 the new Terminal Building replaced the old Bavarian terminal from 1912 which had become too small for the organization and the control of the daily routine of flying long since.

The new Terminal Building is a one-storied functional building with a curved outline, a small look-out tower on its south side and two garages for a fire-truck and an ambulance. The curved outline and the low silhouette are in deep contrast to other contemporary terminal buildings. This special design was necessary to meet the requirements of the 17th century layout of the castle garden near Schleissheim Airfield.

Historical viewlines of the nearbay castle (red lines)

All the facilities necessary for safe flying operations were accommodated in the new terminal building, including the air traffic control office, the meteorological office, the fire department, a first-aid room and an emergency power plant in the cellar. However, its look-out tower was much smaller than the 1918 tower of the repair hangar: The controller now sat in a glass look-out in the second floor instead of the top of a 15 yards (14 meters) tower although the Terminal building was much closer to the runways. It is only 180 yards (165 meters) away from the western end of the runway.

The shortcoming of an insufficient view over the airfield from the look-out of the terminal building was eliminated in 1958 when the U.S. Army erected a new control tower south of the Terminal Building.

The American built Tower in 1961.  

The ensemble Terminal Building / American Control Tower is including further two buildings: A few yards apart from the main buildings are two small houses, one housing the second emergency power plant and the other a workshop.

Right next to the terminal building the freight terminal is located which also contained the central heating. This building had been constructed in 1917 by the Royal Bavarian Flying Corps originally serving as supply building and storehouse for engine and lubricating oil being fitted out with loading ramps and railroad connection. Later the freight terminal was also used for checking and packing parachutes. When Schleissheim airfield was taken over by the USAAF after World War Two, the PX moved into this building. For a time a homing antenna was mounted on its roof. After the departure of the American armed forces, the former freight terminal had been in use as airfield canteen and guardhouse by the German Army Air force until 1981.

The former Freight Terminal of Bavarian Flying Corps. This picture was taken in 1930.  

Today the Terminal Building is the home of the foundation "Ost- und Westpreussen in Bayern" and the American Control Tower is in use as a base for an antenna of a cell phone network. The freight terminal has become a restaurant and two small support buildings are serving as weekend residences. But the foundation will leave the area in 2002 and the buildings will be sold.

The buildings are generally in satisfactory condition, however, the American Control Tower is in urgent need of a thorough restoration. The Terminal Building need an immediate replacement of the heating plant, dating from 1917 and an adjustment of the surrounding area which run wild.

The ensemble on an arial view in February 2001:
Left the American built Tower, right the Terminal Building and behind the Freight Terminal.
At the left side of the Picture there two are small builings. The left one was the emergency
power plant No. 2 and the other a workshop. The building in front of the Tower, left of the
garages is a mockup for movies which has not been removed after the end of the movie works.



The Americans in Schleissheim

Historical overview
American units and installations
American Control Tower
Models scale 1:72
Virtual Museum

Letzte Änderung: 30. November 2007
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