Glossy adverts battle age-old architecture in Berlin

Having just spent a couple of days in Berlin, my lasting impression was the continual rebuilding of buildings damaged or destroyed by war.

In stark contrast to these old buildings though, newness can be found in pockets around the city. Rather out-of-place and out of character, the new creeps in via enormous glossy billboard advertising and an impossible-to-miss television tower that stands at 368 metres tall. 

Berlin's TV tower (right) standing in stark contrast to the city's cathedral (left). Image source:

Along with the Reichstag and the Brandenburg Gate, this ultra-modern TV tower is now an undeniable part of Berlin’s tourist scene, but a visit to it feels like a trip to somewhere entirely different to the rest of the city.

While most European cities have found a way to seamlessly balance their character and history with much more modern aspects, it felt to me as if Berlin struggled so much more than many others. Ironic, really, since its history is far more recent by comparison.

While Rome, Paris and London boast bright lights, technology and plenty of old charm, Berlin seemed as though it couldn’t really accommodate the old and the new.

Perhaps that’s what sets it apart from the rest, but it’s sure to prove a challenge for many years to come for modern-day advertisers who wish to capitalise on Germany’s capital city by erecting billboards and perhaps even digital ad screens to promote their wares.


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