Euroairport (II): an international border of sorts
After my damning report on some of the faulty aspects of the passenger experience at Euroairport, I thought I would write something about a somehow more positive side of this facility: the international arrangement that makes it possible for three neighboring cities to share an international airport, despite each being under a different jurisdiction: Basel (Switzerland), Mulhouse, in Alsace (France) and Freiburg, just across the Rhine in Germany.
Indeed Euroairport is an example of how international cooperation can deliver very tangible benefits: the Swiss city of Basel (the largest of the three) gets access to suitable land right next to it, while Mulhouse and Freiburg get a larger international airport that they could ever get on their own.
The airport is entirely on French territory, but since 1949 there is an international agreement in place between France and Switzerland, that allows the latter country to manage its own side of the airport, pretty much as it if it was on Swiss soil.
Shops on the Swiss side have prices in Swiss Francs (and Swiss prices!) and postboxes are also from the Swiss post. There are also French and Swiss bus stops (that I could "enjoy" during my trip there). At border control one post was manned by a French policeman, the other by a Swiss one.
Those that take an interest in borders, will note that the airport is divided in a more or less symmetrical fashion, with this panel acting as a sort of pseudo-border...