Saturday 10th September 1921
The Avus Autobahn near Berlin, the world’s first controlled-access highway and part of Germany’s Bundesautobahn system, opened. A symbol of modernity and a model of German engineering, the autobahn system was nearly destroyed during World War II. At the start of the postwar era, the newly formed nations of East and West Germany set about repairing the superhighway network. The system was greatly extended and improved in West Germany, which had a higher growth rate of motor traffic than its Eastern neighbour, although repairs and extensions were also made to the system in East Germany. Over the years, the autobahn has regained its status as a model expressway, famed for its non-existent speed limit.