Cologne / Bonn Airport

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Cologne / Bonn Airport
"Konrad Adenauer"

Cologne Bonn Airport Logo.svg
Arial View CGN EDDK.jpg

50 ° 51 '57 "  N , 7 ° 8' 34"  E Coordinates: 50 ° 51 '57 "  N , 7 ° 8' 34"  E

Height above MSL 77 m (253  ft )
Transport links
Distance from the city center 12 km southeast of Cologne,
16 km northeast of Bonn
Street A59 B8
train ICE-Logo.svg( Cologne – Frankfurt )
Local transport Regional traffic : RE 6 RB 27

S-Bahn : S 13 S 19
Bus : 161 SB60 long-distance bus
terminal Cologne

Basic data
opening 1938
operator Cologne / Bonn Airport GmbH
surface 1000 ha
Terminals 2
Passengers 12,958,200 (2018)
Air freight 859,400 t (2018)
144,200 (2018)
( PAX per year)
15 million
Employees 12,624 in companies and authorities (1,931 of which at the airport company)
06/24 2459 m × 45 m concrete
14R / 32L 1863 m × 45 m asphalt
14L / 32R 3815 m × 60 m asphalt

i1 i3

i7 i10 i12 i14

Airport with Cologne skyline

The Cologne / Bonn "Konrad Adenauer" airport ( ICAO code : EDDK , IATA Code : CGN , branding Cologne Bonn Airport , rare Cologne-Wahn ) is an international commercial airport in Cologne . It is 12 km from Cologne and 16 km from Bonn city ​​center. In terms of passenger numbers, it was 7th in Germany in 2019 and 3rd in the freight sector.

It serves as a hub for the cargo airlines UPS Airlines and FedEx and as the base for the low-cost airline Eurowings . The Federal Ministry of Defense is at home on the site . Until September 2014 it was the home base of the regional airline Lufthansa CityLine .

In 2020, the airport was voted the second best regional airport in Europe among 13.5 million respondents in the Skytrax World Airport Awards survey, and ranked 3rd worldwide in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2019, the airport ranked 1st in Europe and 2nd worldwide. In 2020, the airport is among the top 30 worldwide in the World's Top 100 Airports category . The airport was also awarded four out of five stars.


Airports in NRW
Airport audio logo

The airport is located in Cologne's south-eastern outskirts in Cologne-Grengel and a small part in Troisdorf . In 2018 it was number 3 in the freight sector and number 6 in terms of passenger numbers in Germany. It ranks 6th in the top 50 of the largest air freight transshipment centers in Europe, closely followed by Brussels-Zaventem in 7th place. In the passenger area, the airport competes at the state level in particular with the larger Düsseldorf Airport, Niederrhein Airport , which is only 49 km to the north and Dortmund Airport . Even the Frankfurt airport as the largest German airport is in the catchment area, as it can be reached by ICE from Cologne in only 47 minutes drive away.

As a long-standing government airport and because of the Air Force facilities stationed here, Cologne / Bonn is one of the few German airports without a night flight ban alongside Leipzig / Halle , Nuremberg and Frankfurt-Hahn . This leads to noise pollution , in particular due to night aircraft noise , in the densely populated catchment area of the airport with the major cities of Cologne and Bonn, as well as the Rhein-Sieg district , Rheinisch-Bergischer district and Oberbergischer district .

Despite the economic crisis and the departure of DHL and Lufthansa Cargo , the number of employees at Cologne / Bonn Airport has remained almost constant. At the end of 2009, a total of 12,216 people were employed at the airport, only around two percent fewer than in 2007. This is the result of the current workplace survey at Cologne / Bonn Airport. Since the establishment of the low-cost airlines in 2001, the number of employees has increased by 28 percent.


Forerunner of today's airport

After the "German Ballonsport Club" in 1889, the "Coelner Club für Luftschifffahrt" was founded in 1906, which still exists today as the Cologne Club for Aviation Sports , and began its trips at the Aachener Weiher . In 1909 the Luftschiffer Battalion 3 was stationed in Cologne-Ossendorf on the left bank of the Rhine ; Aviation competitions took place on the racetrack in Weidenpesch . In 1912, the adjacent Butzweilerhof was added to the site in Ossendorf , and the airfield was then used for civil and military purposes. After the First World War , the Royal Air Force occupied the Butzweilerhof, which was returned to the city of Cologne in 1925. Up until the Second World War , Cologne was one of the largest German airports and served by Imperial Airways , Air France , Swissair , Sabena and Lufthansa , among others . After the war the “Butz”, although only slightly damaged, no longer met the requirements of an international airport. From 1957 to 1980 it was used by Belgian army pilots and sport pilots, and the buildings have been a listed building since 1988.

Foundation and first years

During the First World War, the area of ​​the current airport was a military training area. In 1938, the expanded German Air Force the air base Cologne-Wahn on the former shooting madness in the Wahnheide. The first runway, a tower and several halls were built. The following table shows a list of selected active air units (excluding school and supplementary units) of the Air Force that were stationed here between 1939 and 1945.

Main entrance to Cologne's Butzweilerhof Airport, 1937
From To unit
September 1939 May 1940 III./StG. 51 (III. Group of Sturzkampfgeschwader 51) Junkers Ju 87B
October 1939 January 1940 Is G. 1 Junkers Ju 87B
November 1939 November 1939 I./JG 77 (I. Group of Jagdgeschwader 77) Messerschmitt Bf 109E
April 1940 June 1940 Staff, II./ZG 76 (Staff and II. Group of Destroyer Squadron 76) Messerschmitt Bf 110
May 1940 June 1940 II./KG 76 (II. Gruppe des Kampfgeschwader 76) Dornier Do 17Z
September 1944 October 1944 III./JG 27 Messerschmitt Bf 109G-6
December 1944 January 1945 Staff, I., II., III./SG 4 (staff, I., II. And III. Group of the battle squadron 4) Focke-Wulf Fw 190F-8
December 1944 January 1945 IV./KG 200

After the Second World War, the airfield was expanded by the British Air Force of Occupation and a runway with a length of 1,866 m was laid.

Here, among other things, a squadron Spitfire PR.9 and up to four squadrons Mosquito FB.6 / B.35 lay at the same time, they formed the squadron 139th Wing. After the end of the Airlift , these five squadrons moved to RAF Wunstorf and RAF Celle , and in early October 1949 the RAF passed control to the British Control Commission . At that time there were talks about using the airport civilly again to connect Cologne and the new federal capital Bonn , but this was only tolerated to a very limited extent.

In January 1952, in view of the looming Cold War, RAF Wahn was stationed with squadrons equipped with jets. First a squadron of Meteor NF11 night fighters was set up, followed later by Canberra PR.7 reconnaissance aircraft. In 1954 the 2,460 m long cross wind runway (07/25, since 2006: 06/24) was completed. Units of the 2nd Tactical Air Force of the RAF used the airport until mid-1957. This also included the 42nd Squadron of the Belgians , which at that time flew the F-84E / G / RF-84F .

In 1957 the airport was handed over to civilian administration. The terminal building was a simple building at the western end of the cross wind runway, the lush flowerbeds of which gave it the nickname "Flower Airport". The runways were no longer sufficient for international air traffic with jet planes. For this reason, the main runway was planned and built parallel to the 1,800 m long runway with a length of 3,815 m and a width of 60 m by the State New Building Office in Wahn, under the direction of Fritz H. Wolters . After the completion of the large runway in 1961, the first long-haul flight from Cologne / Bonn took place. With the laying of the foundation stone for the new terminal and the construction of the radar tower, the expansion in the north-west part began in 1965. In 1968 the air traffic control was inaugurated with the new tower, two years later what is now Terminal 1, designed by Paul Schneider-Esleben , opened.

Development in the 1970s to 1990s

Space Shuttle Enterprise , May 1983

By 1978 the handling capacity increased to two million people. The first tower was demolished in 1981, followed by the demolition of the “Flower Airport” in 1984. In May 1983 a NASA delegation visited Cologne / Bonn with the space shuttle " Enterprise ". More than 300,000 visitors watched the landing or viewed the space shuttle, which was mounted on the back of a Boeing 747 . Since then, the runway at Cologne / Bonn Airport has been one of around 60 emergency landing sites for the reusable shuttle. They needed such emergency runways for unscheduled landings. In 1986 UPS Airlines set up its European hub at Cologne / Bonn Airport. With TNT Airways , another freight carrier followed in 1988 with its European hub .

Historic photo, 1989

From 1991 to 1994 today's tower was built next to the air traffic control building. In 1994 the airport was renamed "Airport Cologne / Bonn - Konrad Adenauer" to honor the commitment of the first Federal Chancellor to the airport. In 1996, after a major fire at Düsseldorf Airport , Cologne / Bonn took over almost all of the traffic. At the same time, the construction of Terminal West and the construction of an additional floor with a pulpit on the roof of Hall BC for the new apron control took place . In 1998, TNT ceased operations at Cologne / Bonn Airport to move to Liège . In the same year, parking garage 2 was opened, which was followed a year later by parking garage 3.

More recent history since 2000

Terminal 2, which cost 325 million euros, was completed in 2000. Construction began to connect the airport to the rail network, and the 1968 tower was demolished. In May 2001, the police moved into a new station in Terminal 1. It is located there in area C on the arrivals level and has an area of ​​200 square meters. Until then, it was housed in a makeshift building next to the airport administration. In 2002, Germanwings and Hapag-Lloyd Express started from Cologne / Bonn for the first time. In the same year the airport was renamed “Cologne Bonn Airport” and a new corporate design was introduced. The low-cost airlines brought the airport an increase of 43% in 2003.

In 2004, an 18-month-old child was trapped in a revolving door in an accident in Terminal 2 and was fatally injured, which is why all revolving doors were subsequently replaced with arched sliding doors. In June of the same year, the airport station was completed as part of the high-speed route Cologne – Rhine / Main ; together with the 15 km long airport loop, it cost 532 million euros. Also in 2004, EasyJet opened three routes to Great Britain, in December the 25 million euro “Starwalk” expansion hall was inaugurated, which houses shops, restaurants, gates and offices. On October 28, 2005, Transport Minister Oliver Wittke opened a new DHL sorting center , which with the associated infrastructure cost nine million euros.

In 2006, the airport just fell short of the goal it had set itself of ten million passengers in one year. From June to November 2006, a Germanwings administration building for 150 employees was built near the airport administration for four million euros. With 450,000 additional passengers, the annual volume rose to 9.9 million. The freight volume grew by seven percent to 698,000 tons. There were a total of 152,000 take-offs and landings.

In 2007, 10.47 million passengers took off or landed in Cologne / Bonn. This is the first time the airport has passed the 10 million passenger mark in one year. Compared to the previous year, this meant growth of 6 percent. Despite the departure of DHL and Lufthansa Cargo in October, the freight volume grew by three percent to 719,000 tons. The number of take-offs and landings fell to 151,000. On March 31, 2007, there were 12,460 employees in 135 companies at the airport.

In 2008, the airport recorded 10.35 million passengers for the first time in six years. This was 1.3 percent below the record result of 2007. The freight volume fell to 587,000 tons due to the departure of DHL and Lufthansa Cargo. The night flight regulations were extended in February 2008 unchanged until 2030. After DHL moved to Leipzig and FedEx entered Cologne, the cargo airline companies in particular requested an extension. Despite violent protests from some affected municipalities, the extension was enforced. As part of the “Aerospace Day” in the neighboring DLR center, an Airbus A380 landed for the first time in Cologne / Bonn on September 19, 2009 and presented itself to the general public.

Projection at Terminal 1 by Youth Against AIDS on the occasion of Christopher Street Day

In 2012, the Irish low-cost airline Ryanair began offering regular flights from Cologne / Bonn. The first destinations were Mallorca and Barcelona-Girona. In 2015, Eurowings began offering long-haul flights from Cologne / Bonn. The first flight took off in October 2015 towards Varadero , Cuba. From December 2015, Eurowings also flew Bangkok , Phuket (Thailand), Dubai (UAE), Varadero (Cuba), Cancun (Mexico), Bridgetown (Barbados), La Romana , Puerto Plata , Punta Cana (Dominican Republic) and Montego Bay ( Jamaica). This was followed in May and June 2016 in Boston , Miami , Las Vegas (USA), Mauritius (Mauritius) and Tehran (Iran). The flight to Phuket was the longest direct flight operated from Cologne / Bonn, with a distance of over 9,400 kilometers. In February 2018, Eurowings announced that it was giving up the long-haul base in Cologne for the 2018 winter flight schedule in favor of Düsseldorf Airport .

Cologne / Bonn Airport was certified for landings by NASA's space shuttles and was the point of contact for unscheduled landings outside of the US bases.

Since 2014, the airport and the organization Youth Against AIDS have been initiating an annual campaign on the occasion of Christopher Street Day in Cologne. In 2017 - on the occasion of the vote on same-sex marriage in the German Bundestag - Terminal Building 1 was illuminated in the Pride colors by the light artist Matthias Strobl.


The distribution of the ownership shares at the airport reflects the political will to involve all of the surrounding local authorities in the management and development of the area. Flughafen Köln / Bonn GmbH as the operating company belongs to the city of Cologne to 31.12 percent, the Federal Republic of Germany to 30.94 percent, the state of North Rhine-Westphalia to 30.94 percent, the city of Bonn to 6.06 percent, the Rhine Sieg-Kreis to 0.59 percent and the Rheinisch-Bergisches Kreis to 0.35 percent. It is therefore a vertically mixed public company . The chairman of the supervisory board was the former Federal Minister from April 2016 to December 2017. D. Kurt Bodewig . His successor was Friedrich Merz .

The approximately 1000 hectare area of ​​the airport belonged to the Federal Republic of Germany, since it was founded on January 1, 2005, to the Federal Agency for Real Estate Tasks (BImA). On the basis of a leasehold contract that runs until 2020 , the operating company made annual ground rent payments to the federal government in the amount of initially 500,000 euros. In 2000, the federal government demanded an increase in payments - in some cases retrospectively. The ground rent amounted to 1.65 million euros in 2006. In December 2008, Flughafen Köln / Bonn GmbH and BImA agreed on the sale of the site to the airport company after years of negotiations and litigation. The purchase price was set at 100 million euros. Flughafen Köln / Bonn GmbH has owned the site since April 2009.

Shares of the shareholders
Shareholder proportion of
city ​​Cologne
Federal Republic of Germany
State of North Rhine-Westphalia
City of Bonn
Rhein-Sieg district
Rheinisch-Bergischer Kreis

Traffic figures

Size comparison of German airports, 2015
Traffic figures for Cologne / Bonn Airport
year Passenger volume Flight movements Freight
in tons
1950 2,260 154 20th
1960 273,644 25,033 3539
1970 1,404,640 55,533 17,712
1980 2,090,694 86.127 51,837
1990 3,176,089 118,936 170.507
1991 3,134,537 118.283 190,666
1992 3,637,524 119.046 187,578
1993 3,921,437 117,537 192.993
1994 4,050,190 120,663 241.384
1995 4,842,861 133,399 281.271
1996 5,326,032 139,399 322,521
1997 5,403,145 148.735 382.091
1998 5,480,003 143,047 359,988
1999 6,089,144 151.335 394,868
2000 6.385.101 155,681 427.726
2001 5,802,347 150.174 448.426
2002 5,466,180 138.902 501.080
2003 7,838,302 153,372 527.364
2004 8,406,400 152,700 613,300
2005 9,479,291 154,594 650.947
2006 9,907,736 151,658 650.947
2007 10,474,952 151,658 719.077
2008 10,345,574 141,680 586,536
2009 9,742,350 132.173 559.406
2010 9,851,700 134,300 656.100
2011 9,625,483 130.926 742,347
2012 9,281,703 125,337 751.183
2013 9,079,001 120,388 739.553
2014 9,451,414 123.243 754.342
2015 10,339,200 128,620 757.702
2016 11,896,149 136.905 786.407
2017 12.384.223 141,338 838,526
Domestic German air traffic by number of flight movements (2015)
Busiest routes from CGN
rank target Passengers
change Passengers
change Starts
1 GermanyGermany Berlin Tegel 595,589   -3.89% 619.680 5,304   -1.36% 5,377
2 GermanyGermany Munich 516.902   3.6% 498.919 5,316   1.96% 5,214
3 SpainSpain Palma de Mallorca 479.323   4.89% 456.998 3,196   6.96% 2,988
4th TurkeyTurkey Antalya 336,538   62% 207.735 1.961   61.53% 1,214
5 GermanyGermany Hamburg 240.087   -1.91% 244,753 2,439   -2.24% 2,495
6th United KingdomUnited Kingdom London Stansted 217.832   5.45% 206,578 2,054   1.08% 2,032
7th TurkeyTurkey Istanbul Ataturk 179,237   28.17% 139,845 1.933   12.25% 1,722
8th AustriaAustria Vienna 179.110   4.36% 171,635 1,859   0.27% 1,854
9 GermanyGermany Berlin Schoenefeld 160.226   -25.2% 214.215 1,348   -24.1% 1,776
10 TurkeyTurkey Istanbul-Sabiha Gokcen 137.106   4.19% 131,586 898   -0.22% 900
11 SwitzerlandSwitzerland Zurich 136,813   -2.04% 139,666 1,348   -2.53% 1,383
12 SpainSpain Barcelona 128,866   4.96% 122,776 1,060   -1.3% 1,074
13 ItalyItaly Bergamo 105,962   0.54% 105.394 1,298   -1.37% 1,316
14th United KingdomUnited Kingdom London Heathrow 98,312   8.44% 90,661 944   1.72% 928
15th PortugalPortugal Lisbon 94,331   37.55% 68,580 987   53.98% 641
16 TurkeyTurkey Izmir 82,485   17.54% 70.176 523   9.64% 477
17th IrelandIreland Dublin 80,750   -4.53% 84,579 778   -3.83% 809
18th SpainSpain Las Palmas 73.192   -24.7% 97.204 466   -22.59% 602
19th GermanyGermany Dresden 67,445   -7.13% 72,622 698   -11.42% 788
20th EgyptEgypt Hurghada 65,589   47.77% 44,386 386   45.11% 266
21st SpainSpain Tenerife South 65,149   -9.69% 72,140 406   -11.35% 458
22nd United KingdomUnited Kingdom Manchester 64,383   70.38% 37,787 482   41.35% 341
23 ItalyItaly Rome Ciampino 62,358   -12.12% 70.955 363   -14.59% 425
24 RussiaRussia Moscow-Vnukovo 58,388   8.53% 53,801 585   2.27% 572
25th ItalyItaly Bologna 58,385   79.36% 32,551 443   33.43% 332
This statistic only includes starts. (No landings)

By country

Busiest routes to countries from CGN
rank target Passengers
change Passengers
change Starts
1 GermanyGermany Germany 1,642,622   -4.24% 1,715,408 17.160   -3.1% 17,709
2 SpainSpain Spain 1,028,083   0.03% 1,027,728 7,471   1.19% 7,383
3 TurkeyTurkey Turkey 809.679   31.24% 616.940 5,825   21.1% 4,810
4th ItalyItaly Italy 506.185   10% 460.188 4,651   2.24% 4,549
5 United KingdomUnited Kingdom Great Britain 461.301   21.69% 379.087 5,384   8.97% 4,941
6th AustriaAustria Austria 249.614   3.98% 240.062 2,568   0.67% 2,551
7th PortugalPortugal Portugal 203.137   25.03% 162,472 1,940   30.29% 1,489
8th GreeceGreece Greece 188,405   10.54% 170,440 1,645   14.32% 1,439
9 SwitzerlandSwitzerland Switzerland 137,621   -3.19% 142.160 2,199   1.76% 2.161
10 CroatiaCroatia Croatia 97,775   -0.04% 97.812 813   1.5% 801
11 PolandPoland Poland 86,251   1.59% 84,899 1,334   -6.52% 1,427
12 IrelandIreland Ireland 80,762   -4.53% 84,596 792   -2.58% 813
13 EgyptEgypt Egypt 77,145   43.34% 53,818 642   20.68% 532
14th RussiaRussia Russia 74,811   38.74% 53,922 695   15.26% 603
15th BulgariaBulgaria Bulgaria 72.909   -16.61% 87,436 548   -26.64% 747
This statistic only includes starts. (No landings)



The airport is constantly being expanded and expanded (see also the rubrics conversion and expansion of the individual areas). The two terminals have a handling capacity of 12 million passengers a year.

Planned and started conversions

Terminal 1: With the new central pick-up area on the departure level, there is now additional space on the ground floor for the planned expansion of baggage reclaim B and C. 1000 square meters of new retail space is to be created behind the security check.

Terminal 2: In the west of Terminal 2, a 2700 m 2 extension is planned on the air side. For this purpose, the social rooms with canteen currently located on this site are to be integrated into the extension. The extension is intended to enable the security controls to be expanded, thereby replacing the restaurant space that is no longer required.

T-Walk connection: Between Stern C (Terminal 1) and Terminal 2, a new, glass transfer terminal with retail space for transit passengers is planned. When applying for a plan approval procedure , the T-Walk is replaced by another variant for connecting the terminals.

Other facilities and buildings: The P1 multi-storey car park with 1200 parking spaces should actually be demolished from the end of 2010 and rebuilt with 3700 parking spaces. However, the project has apparently been postponed. Short-term parking spaces are to be created on the top level for the new arrival area B / C. The investment volume is expected to amount to around 29 million euros.

The construction of a new airport hotel is also planned.

Passenger facilities

Terminal 1

Terminal 1

The contract for Cologne / Bonn Airport was awarded to the architect Paul Schneider-Esleben directly by the North Rhine-Westphalian state government after he had won the state's Great Art Prize. Schneider-Esleben designed a pentagonal car park for Cologne / Bonn with a central tower through which the fresh air for the air conditioning system is sucked in, as well as a recooling basin designed as a pond between the entrance and the exit. The square was enclosed on three sides by the main building with components A, B / C and D, at each corner of which a corridor leads to one of the star-shaped satellites on the apron. The area for arriving passengers is located on the ground floor with its own driveway, on the first floor there is the main hall with sales counters and the satellites, in which baggage handling and security checks are carried out, and above it, on a mezzanine floor, a transit corridor. The remaining floors were used for the visitor restaurant and the viewing terrace as well as office space.

Terminal 1 - Gate C 5

Important criteria in the design of the terminal building were short distances from the parking lot to the aircraft as well as during transit, a spacious, intersection-free street layout and manageable paths in the building. A telescopic tunnel as weather protection on the way to the aircraft had been tried out for the first time in 1936 at the “Beehive” terminal in London-Gatwick , but it had not yet become generally accepted in Europe. In 1968, Geneva-Cointrin was the first European airport with so-called apron satellites, which could be reached from the main building through a pedestrian tunnel, which, however, was found to be impractical, especially since aircraft could not dock with the satellites and passengers were still exposed to the weather when boarding .

The main feature of the system was the decentralized handling directly on the aircraft instead of in a central hall. Each of the six check-in positions on a satellite had its own check-in counter, behind it its own waiting room with security and passport control, toilets and passenger boarding bridge. Incoming passengers either reached the hall on the same level and from there to the baggage claim on the ground floor or, if it was an international flight, via a staircase to the transit floor above, a balcony-like network of connecting corridors between the waiting rooms, on which the duty is also located -Free shops and the access to the transit restaurant were located (the stairs to the restaurant are still visible in Hall BC between Burger King and the newsagents, but have not been used for a long time). The route, which was found to be innovative at the time, separated the ticket sales in the hall from the check-in in the satellite, made separate building wings for national and international traffic superfluous and the misdirection of luggage and passengers almost impossible, as the check-in took place directly in front of the plane.

The building consists largely of unplastered concrete slabs and looks like a mountain of concrete when you approach it. In fact, the large window areas of the main hall are only covered from the outside by the parapets of the balcony-like corridors on the mezzanine floor, from the inside one had a very good view of the apron, light wells next to the stairwells provide additional daylight. Of the four originally planned satellites, only the two middle ones were built when it opened.

The shell was dimensioned in such a way that a terminus for trains the size of a tram could be accommodated in the basement, but plans for a connection to the Cologne-Bonn railways or an Alwegbahn were not pursued further due to a lack of demand. A possible third parking level was never realized either.

Modifications and extensions

Aerial photograph

In 1972/73 the central parking lot was increased by one floor, the luggage tunnels from the satellites to the main building were shut down and larger output belts that were loaded from the apron were installed in the arrival areas. In 1974 the additional check-in counters C7 – C10 were built in the main CD hall.

In 1989/90 Hall A was converted into a check-in area for Lufthansa with a "Senator" and "Frequent Traveler Lounge". A lightweight baggage sorting hall was built on apron A, and handling is carried out with apron buses . Hall D has been used as a check-in area for charter planes since its renovation.

In 1996, an additional floor and a pulpit for the new apron control were built on the former visitor terrace on the roof of Hall BC . The recooling basin of the air conditioning system, the "pond" between the entrance to the parking deck, was drained and temporarily air-cooled heat exchangers were installed in it; it was demolished along with the driveway as part of the construction work for the train station and parking garage 2.

Since May 1, 2001, there has been a central check-in in Terminal 1, Area A. This means that the previous decentralized check-in counters in Area B have been eliminated. The decentralized facilities for checking people and hand luggage in Star B have been abolished and replaced by a central one Control point at the entrance to star B replaced.

Since 2004, check-in for Germanwings has been at the new counters in Hall C at the transition to Terminal 2. Counters C7-C10 in Star C are only kept ready for use as a reserve, as they are not connected to the automatic baggage sorting system. The “Starwalk” between satellites B and C opened in December in order to offer the same shopping opportunities in Terminal 1 as in Terminal 2 and to create additional bus gates. A bridge in the middle of Hall BC leads to the glass hall with a barrel roof made of sheet metal, in which the security checks are also carried out. Further bridges lead to satellites B and C. Passenger boarding bridges B1 and C6 had to be dismantled. Space has been created on the Starwalk for three new passenger boarding bridges, which have not yet been installed (2007).

In February 2005, Prof. Schneider-Esleben, the architect of Terminal 1, sued the airport company for seeing that the Starwalk disregarded his architectural copyright. He ceded the rights to the structure to the airport company for 175,000 euros.

In May 2006, work began on the connection between Terminal 1 and the airport train station. In place of the temporary exit, a two-storey connecting structure made of steel and glass with a facade area of ​​1,400 square meters was built. Passengers can now use two escalators and an elevator to get directly from the train station to the arrivals and departures levels of Terminal 1, Area A / B. The architect is Helmut Jahn, according to whose plans a number of buildings have already been built at Cologne / Bonn Airport. As the client, Deutsche Bahn puts the construction costs at 8 million euros. The opening took place in June 2007, at the same time as the opening of the new terminal area 1 A / B of Germanwings.

In October 2006, the check-in counters were relocated from departure area B to departure area C of Terminal 1. In the course of the redesign, 26 new check-in counters plus ticket counters were created. The first table service restaurant opened at the airport. As part of this, the terminal was given access to the train station.

On June 17, 2007, Germanwings received a new check-in area with 26 check-in counters. A new baggage system in apron area A also went into operation. There was also a restaurant, a medical center and a new station lobby. In October Lufthansa moved into area C. The old check-in counters were dismantled in order to obtain new non-aviation areas. Apron A was expanded.

In 2008 Lufthansa moved into the completely renovated "Pier C". The center of the new gate area are the two new Lufthansa lounges, which are located in the middle of the new departure and arrival area. In addition to enlarging the non-aviation areas, the airport expanded the central security checkpoint in Terminal 1 from 10 to 18 lanes. In addition, the non-aviation area was expanded with ten shops.

May 2009: Cologne / Bonn is Europe's first low-cost airport that is capable of transit. A new transit area has been created in Terminal 1, which allows all transfer routes between non-EU, non-Schengen and Schengen-area destinations. For this purpose, the non-Schengen and Schengen areas were spatially separated in waiting room area B and 2 new security checkpoints and 6 additional passport control boxes were installed. In a bar and a duty-free shop, transferring passengers can take care of themselves while they are waiting. Your baggage will be checked in full if the airline offers this service. The conversion cost around 600,000 euros.

On July 23, 2009, a new supermarket with a sales area of ​​500 square meters was opened in departure area C.

In spring 2010, a new, central collection area was created in Terminal 1 on the departures level. Arriving passengers reach the departure / arrival area via a treadmill or elevators.

At the beginning of 2011, the shops in Terminal 1 were partially redesigned and the catering in the arrival waiting area was expanded to include a “piano bar” with occasional live piano music. A new visitor terrace provides an unobstructed view of all runways with free entry.

Terminal 2

Exterior view of Terminal 2
Terminal 2 from the outside

When it became foreseeable in the 1990s that the old building could no longer cope with the increasing number of passengers, an architectural competition for a second terminal was announced. While the airport expected a "dignified" extension of the existing building, the well-known architects delivered either standard goods (Murphy & Jahn, JSK , Behnisch and Partner) or partly utopian fantasy buildings with built-in biotopes (Christoph Ingenhoven), a pompous "Baroque garden" ( Design by Zeidler Roberts Partnership) or even a caged forest with overgrown parking garages (Nouvel / Cattani office). A first prize was not awarded and the reviews sometimes describe the rejection of the jurors in an unflattering way (“the design suffers from all the principles of its conception”). The ideas of Murphy & Jahn and JSK should therefore be revised into a suitable draft.

Inside view of Terminal 2
Terminal 2 from the inside

On June 30, 1997 the foundation stone was laid for the building, which is mainly made of steel and glass, for around 380 million marks. It is about 300 m long and 75 m deep. Helmut Jahn , who caused a sensation with his terminal in Chicago O'Hare, created a glass hall with eight gates, which can be extended later, in the extended escape of Hall D. There are 40 check-in counters on the upper floor , spacious waiting areas and lounges, snack bars and newsagents, including a mezzanine floor with travel agencies and on the ground floor, which, however, corresponds to the level of the basement of the old terminal, the baggage claim hall with passport and customs control, the exits West and East, as well as other bars, shops and a supermarket. In the basement there is access to the underground train station, which could also be used as a connection to a similar expansion terminal planned at a later date in Hall A. The Art Foyer located on the distribution level comprised the diners bistro area, which is now closed, and the multimedia exhibition area of ​​the Art and Exhibition Hall of the Federal Republic of Germany, which is currently (04/2011) also not used, and which provides interactive information on current, future and past exhibitions of art and art Exhibition hall informed. Each usage area is housed in a separate free-standing block. The spatial arrangement of the bars traces the direction of travel of the passengers. The generous glazing of the entire terminal not only brings a lot of light into the building, but also facilitates orientation to the air and land side . Not a single rung interrupts the 12,500 square meter glass facade, which architect Helmut Jahn hangs on a rope lock. Daylight comes through an atrium over all floors down to the rail distribution level. The building is designed for six million passengers a year. The heart of the terminal is the large baggage sorting system on the apron level, which distributes up to 3,000 pieces of baggage per hour. Suitcases and bags are scanned fully automatically and, thanks to the latest technology, sorted according to the respective flight destination. In April 2000, Terminal 2 was completed after a construction period of almost three years. This is followed by a test and trial phase lasting several weeks before the terminal is opened for flight operations in June. Terminal 2 had already started operations on July 11, 2000 and was officially opened on September 21, 2000.

Modifications and extensions

Since 2004, the underground long-distance and regional train station has been reached through the basement of Terminal 2.

November 2004 - Due to the growing number of passengers and increased security requirements, the security checkpoints in Terminal 2 are being expanded.

In 2005 the entrance area to the waiting rooms was enlarged to create space for additional security checkpoints. As a second construction phase, the building can be extended to the west; as a third phase, a similar but shorter building as an extension of Hall A is possible in the long term.

Terminal West

In July 1996, the "Terminal West" was opened, an additional handling building with eight gates between Terminal 1 and the freight area. Since the opening of “Terminal 2” it has also been used for special events, special flights (returnees after the tsunami disaster, etc.) and occasional concerts by airport-based companies. During the Pope's visit in 2005, it served as a press center.

Terminal West was completely dismantled by October 2008. The new FedEx hub for Central and Eastern Europe is now at the same location.

Parking garages

Parking lot P1 at Terminal 1

The car parks P1, P2 and P3 at the airport offer a total of around 13,000 parking spaces. Multi-storey car park 1 is located in the middle of Terminal 1. Multi-storey car parks 2 and 3 are equipped with electronic parking space detection and LED displays show the way to the next free space.

  • June 30, 1997: At the same time as the laying of the foundation stone for Terminal 2, the topping-out wreath floated over car park 2, which since the beginning of 1998 has provided space for 5800 vehicles. Terminal 2 was built on the site of the former north car park, so that new car parks had to be built for the no longer available parking spaces. Despite this dimension, the architect Helmut Jahn from Chicago designed a clear building, the trapezoidal floor plan of which he divided into four units, each 65 meters wide. In between there are 10 meter wide air and light shafts, which give an impression of being open on all sides. The much praised clarity of Cologne Bonn Airport was not impaired either, because behind P2 the facades of the existing and the new terminal remained visible. The pure construction costs amounted to around 70 million marks.
  • Car park 3 went into operation on March 26, 1999. With 4300 parking spaces on eight levels, P3 is primarily intended for holidaymakers. Multi-storey car park 3, which, like its big brother P2, was designed by Helmut Jahn, is bright and clear despite its size. With its subtle color scheme, its stainless steel facade and its glass exterior elevators, it is not an “off-the-peg parking garage”. The traveler has to allow around 10 minutes to walk to the terminal. In 2006 and 2007 it was expanded.
  • On May 15, 2001, the north parking lot opened its barriers. It is particularly suitable for oversized vehicles such as mobile homes. Parking garages 2 and 3 are only accessible for vehicles up to a height of 1.95 meters.
  • The disused parabolic aircraft “Zero G” found its final place on August 8, 2015 in the north car park. A heavy-duty crane lifted the approximately 80-ton Airbus A300 from the apron into the parking lot. The German Aerospace Center had used "Zero G" for parabolic flights in which weightlessness is simulated.
  • In 2008, the short-term parking spaces in the arrivals area at Terminal 2 were relocated to the western front.

The P1 multi-storey car park with 1200 parking spaces is to be demolished and a new one with 4000 parking spaces will be built.

railway station

Cologne / Bonn airport train station

On June 13, 2004, the airport station for ICE , regional and regional express trains as well as the S-Bahn was opened as part of the newly built high-speed line Cologne – Rhine / Main . The Cologne / Bonn airport train station is thus a hub for local, regional and IntercityExpress connections. The operators are hoping for further growth from the rail connection. The station was not built as a closed tunnel, as envisaged in the competition design, but with a large glass roof. Under the arched glass roof there are two platforms with two tracks each between exposed concrete walls. A large glass staircase in the middle of the platforms is used to change platforms and leads to the two emergency exits in the middle of the station.

The journey time from Cologne main station to the airport is 11 minutes with the Regional Express, from Cologne Messe / Deutz station it is 8 minutes. With the S-Bahn the journey takes 3 minutes longer. The price for a single ticket is 3.00 euros (as of January 1, 2019).

Long-distance bus station

Long-distance bus station at Terminal 2

The Cologne long-distance bus station was relocated from Breslauer Platz at Cologne Central Station to the airport on October 28, 2015 . It is located in the P32 car park at Terminal 2, which was previously used by coaches.


Since the opening of Terminal 1, letters have been used at Cologne / Bonn Airport to designate the gates and later also for the separate check-in counters, but not for the airline sales counters or shops. The originally planned satellites A, B, C and D became satellites B and C, halls A and D and a "nameless" hall between B and C. In 2000 Terminal 2 took over the letter D, the former hall D im Terminal 1 has been part of Area C since then, but Hall A will retain its letter for the time being. In 2004, with the opening of the Starwalk, satellites B and C were practically merged into one component with a common entrance, but check-in for B takes place in Hall A.

Only on the departure level are all sections continuously connected; on the other floors you have to leave the building between the terminals.

The appearance of the signposts and information signs has been changed several times. In Terminal 1, the signage was initially not yet uniform, mostly silver aluminum signs with black capital letters were used or the names of the piers were painted black on the concrete. This was followed by the internationally common yellow illuminated signs with black letters and simple symbols, such as those designed by Andreu and Frutiger in 1974 for Paris-Roissy . 2000 more modern signs with yellow letters on a dark blue background and revised symbols were used in Terminal 2, before a font similar to OCR-A and colored, partly abstract symbols were introduced in 2003 as part of the new corporate identity . The new font was applied to the facade of Terminal 2 in large, semi-transparent foil letters, but it turned out to be difficult to read there. This was followed by tests with different colored foils (four large yellow "t" at the western end of Terminal 2) and illuminated letters. In 2005, signposts in the new design were installed in Terminal 1.

General Aviation Terminal

The first GAT was created in 1985. This area was later very difficult to reach. A new General Aviation Center for private and business traffic was opened in autumn 2011 at car park P5. On around 1200 square meters and two floors, the new terminal offers a lounge, VIP rooms, conference rooms and a gallery in addition to the personal checkpoint. Rooms are also available for customs and the federal police. The facade of the building is completely glazed. Since the new GAT, unlike its predecessor, is located outside the security area, customers no longer have to be checked twice, but once like all other passengers. Private and business flights from Cologne / Bonn are thus significantly simplified. Every year around 12,500 guests use the GAT. Customers in recent years have included Robbie Williams, Bon Jovi, Michael Schumacher and the footballers of the German national team.

Cargo and hangars

Freight terminals / hubs from FedEx, DHL, Star Air, UPS

In 2005 a large sorting hall for UPS Airlines was completed and put into operation in the cargo area . In addition to UPS Airlines, their cooperation partner Star Air also uses the UPS hub.

In 2006, due to the new provisions of the Aviation Security Act, access to essential areas of the airport, including the entire cargo area, was largely restricted. A central control station and a parking lot for employees in the freight area were set up on the access road to the freight area. These employees reach their workplaces with a shuttle bus that regularly drives to the freight area as well as the workshops behind the control point. Since then, line 161 of the KVB , which previously used this area, has also been turning there.

2007: DHL and Lufthansa Cargo largely moved from Cologne / Bonn to Leipzig at the end of the year.

2008: The service specialist Nayak expanded Hangar 6 by 3000 square meters so that aircraft the size of an Airbus A320 can now be serviced in Cologne / Bonn. A new freight and forwarding center (Cologne Bonn Cargo Center) for general air freight is being built for 25 million euros. The first groundbreaking took place on May 16, 2008. It is 150 meters long and 80 meters wide; the hall area amounts to a total of 12,000 square meters. The 3800 square meter office space is on two floors above the hall. Construction is mainly carried out with reinforced concrete, concrete and industrial glass. On September 20, 2008, the starting shot was given for the construction of a new sorting hall for FedEx . The investment costs for the airport amount to around 70 million euros.

2009: The new Cologne Bonn Cargo Center starts operations in March. It also has photovoltaics on the roof.

Cargo planes on the apron E - F1

On October 27, 2010 the new FedEx transshipment center for Central and Eastern Europe was inaugurated. Cologne Bonn Airport and the world's largest express transport company have jointly invested 140 million euros in the new FedEx hub. The automatic sorting system can process up to 18,000 parcels and documents per hour. On the roof of the building is the world's largest solar system from FedEx Express and, with an area of ​​16,000 square meters, it is also one of the largest solar roof systems in North Rhine-Westphalia. The production is around 800,000 kilowatt hours per year - this amount of energy would be enough to supply around 230 three-person households with electricity for twelve months. The operator is the airport company, which has invested three million euros in this.

The third solar system has been in operation at Cologne / Bonn Airport since summer 2011. UPS has made 28,000 square meters of roof space available free of charge for them. The airport company had the three million euro system built and operates it itself. It produces up to 860,000 kilowatt hours of electricity per year.

In autumn 2011, UPS announced that it would add the latest technology to the existing sorting facility by 2013 and that the current building would be expanded considerably. The measures will significantly increase the hub's sorting capacity from the current 110,000 parcels per hour to 190,000 parcels per hour. With an estimated cost of $ 200 million, this expansion will be the largest building and equipment investment in UPS history outside the United States. UPS is already the largest employer at Cologne Bonn Airport with almost 2,300 employees. The expansion is expected to create up to 200 new jobs by the end of 2013.

Military part

To the west of the smaller runway 14R / 32L is the Wahnheide air force barracks , where 4,500 soldiers and 1,500 civilian employees work for the Bundeswehr . Parts of the Air Force Command , the Air Force Troop Command and the Bundeswehr Aviation Office are housed in 190 buildings on the approximately 2 km² site , as well as other command authorities, associations and units. Furthermore, the flight readiness of the Federal Ministry of Defense , founded in 1957, has its headquarters there. The major location of the Air Force is thus the second largest employer in Cologne-Porz after the airport and an important economic factor .

Around 45,000 passengers are handled here every year.

In 2009, a new terminal building with a usable area of ​​2375 square meters was built for 12.3 million euros and the terminal building from the 1970s was demolished. The new building was supposed to be built as early as 2001, but it was repeatedly postponed.

The part of the flight readiness of the Federal Ministry of Defense responsible for state flight operations is to move to the area of ​​the government terminal at Berlin Brandenburg Airport in the long term . These machines are currently commuting empty from Cologne-Bonn to Berlin to pick up their passengers.

Aircraft noise

Noise map of Cologne / Bonn Airport with departure routes (noise reduction routes)

91,315 residents are affected by a day-evening-night noise index (24-hour average) of over 55 dB (A) and 45,324 residents are affected by a night noise index of 50 dB (A) or more at Cologne / Bonn Airport. Most of those affected live in the cities of Cologne, Siegburg and Hennef (Sieg) .

Affected residents based on the LDEN noise index (6 a.m. to 10 p.m.)
Level range LDen in dB (A) > 55 to 60 > 60 to 65 > 65 to 70 > 70 to 75 > 75
Number of people 128,616 67,420 23.007 888 0
Affected residents based on the LNIGHT noise index (10:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m.)
Level range LNight in dB (A) > 50 to 55 > 55 to 60 > 60 to 65 > 65 to 70 > 70
Number of people 35.209 9,772 343 0 0


  • On April 4, 1978, a spectacular accident occurred that could have ended in disaster: A Convair Coronado operated by the Spanish charter airline Spantax with 146 passengers and crew on board slid over the runway and the right wing caught fire. As it turned out later, the pilots had forgotten to extend the landing gear . It was only thanks to a fortunate circumstance that there happened to be two ready-to-use fire engines right next to the runway with which the fire could be extinguished quickly.
  • On February 24, 1990, on board a Fokker F-27-600 (D-AELB) of FTG Air Service Flugcharter , the engine failed on both sides and the right engine was torn off the wing. The crew had previously practiced stalling in the landing configuration as part of a training flight, whereupon the engines reacted with overheating and vibrations. The subsequent emergency landing in a field near Bergisch Gladbach, about 12 kilometers north of the starting airport Cologne / Bonn, was successful and the two-man crew managed to get to safety, but the machine burned out and had to be written off.

Musical reception

The British musician Brian Eno was forced to spend a few hours in Terminal 1 of Cologne / Bonn Airport in 1977. Impressed by the modernity and the atmosphere of the building, he was equally repulsed by the background music with which the terminal was sounded. While he was still waiting, Eno developed an initial conception for an album that was to establish and shape the ambient genre to a large extent: With the album Ambient 1: Music for Airports , Cologne / Bonn Airport became one of the few buildings that had its own soundtrack Has.

See also


  • Stefan Bodemann: The gateway to the world of the Bonn Republic. Development, construction and importance of the passenger terminal by Paul Schneider-Esleben at Cologne / Bonn Airport. Deutscher Kunstverlag, Berlin 2018.
  • Paul Schneider-Esleben, Heinrich Klotz: Drafts and Buildings 1949–1987. Vieweg-Verlag, 1987.
  • Friedrich Franke: Cologne / Bonn Airport. Greven Verlag, Cologne 1970.
  • Edward Blankenship: The Airport - Architecture, urban integration, ecological problems. Praeger, New York 1974. (bilingual English / German throughout, published in Germany under the title “Der Flughafen”)
  • Flughafen Köln / Bonn GmbH: Architects' competition for terminal expansion. (36-page special publication)
  • NRW architecture database with bibliography on Terminal 1

Web links

Commons : Cologne / Bonn Airport  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

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  36. VRS price list
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