A great vision that unfortunately failed. A chronology:
In Wiesbaden, Carl Freiherr von Gablenz founds the Cargolifter AG, with the aim to build an airship for commercial cargo transports, capable of lifting 160 tonnes.
Construction of the giant hall in which the Cargolifter is to be built begins on the site of a former Soviet airbase in Brandenburg.
The first experimental airship (called "Joey") with a length of 36 meters (the CL 160 would measure 260 meters) is launched.
After moving the company base to Berlin, Cargolifter raises 270 million Euros in an IPO.
The construction hall is completed. It is the world's largest hall without support pillars,measuring 107 meters of height, 320 meters of length and 210 meters of width.
The Airbus consortium refuses to take a stake in the construction of the Cargolifter. This delays the construction of the CL 160. Plans are changed to first build a smaller airship, the CL 75, only capable of lifting 75 tonnes.
The first CL 75 prototype is finished. It takes several months to find a potential buyers.
After admissions that state subsidies will be necessary if the CL 160 is ever to be built, Cargolifter stock rates plummet. Boeing agrees to cooperate in the construction, but refuses to provide additional funds, as does the federal and state governments. On May 28th, the company declares bankruptcy
There have been numerous rumors of ever decreasing credibility about investors that would be willing to save the company, management changes, staff layoffs, assignments of blame, and an investigation concerning the intentional deception of investors in regard to the financial feasibility of the CL 160 project.
The question remains what will happen to the construction hall. Latest plans are even more extravagant than the original purpose: a British-Malay company intends to turn it into a giant greenhouse acting as a tropical resort.