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  • Stefanie Wehr

Deutsche Bahn presents concept for new bridge: Residents fear the worst

Deutsche Bahn presents the noise protection concept for the new railroad bridge in Niederrad. Because residents fear the massive clearing of trees, the project manager makes a promise.

Frankfurt- The temporary noise barrier, which is to be erected according to plans of the German Railways at the railroad embankment behind the Donnersbergstrabe, is to protect the residents of the Ernst May houses there from construction noise. The new railroad bridge will be built directly behind the noise barrier starting in 2024 and will span the Main River by the end of the decade. The background to this is the expansion of the Stadion rail junction, which involves widening the rail embankment south of the Main to the Stadion stop by two mainline tracks.

Deutsche Bahn project manager Marko Asseng and his team have now presented the concrete plans to local residents in an online meeting. The area above Donnersbergstrasse, where the old Niederrad train station and an old freight depot still stand today, will become a construction site. Because the railroad needs "every meter" there, in order to gain space for the delivery and installation of the new bar arch bridge, explained Asseng. In order to create more space, the current embankment, where some DB gardens are also leased, will be filled in. The four-meter-high substructure will then be erected at the edge of the embankment, on which the additional six-meter-high noise barrier will be placed.

Bridge construction in Frankfurt: Deutsche Bahn clears trees and bushes – project manager makes promise

Residents fear bad things, especially noise during construction of the wall and vibrations in their listed houses. They also wanted to know more about the timetable and how much greenery will be cleared. Clearing will take place soon, on 31. January is the start date. By the end of February, trees and bushes will be cleared north of the driveway to the old train station and south above the DB gardens. In addition, the Schwanheimer Strasse turning area will be relocated to the east, as this is where the new tracks will run in the future.

It was important for Marko Asseng to emphasize once again that not as many trees would have to be removed as had been envisaged in the plans, including the amendment to the planning approval procedure. Contrary to these plans, the wall will be moved forward a bit in the direction of the construction site, so that more trees can remain on the other side of the property boundaries on Donnersbergstrasse. "The trees down in the DB gardens will remain", said Asseng. The construction company that builds the wall will know about it and stick to it. "That’s what we’re standing here for", said Asseng "We ask for your trust". It is not yet clear who will build the noise barrier, but the invitation to tender has already been issued.

Frankfurt: Deutsche Bahn builds 250-meter noise barrier – Old train station to be demolished

Before the 250-meter-long noise barrier can be built on Donnersbergstrasse, the old train station and freight depot will have to be demolished. That is to be done from 1. August 2022. Associated noise, also from construction vehicles, could not be avoided during this time. Because the large protective wall can only be erected after demolition.

As soon as the retaining wall and the actual noise barrier on top of it are in place, the embankment facing the structure will be filled in to create an area of about six to seven meters. Asseng expects that the work will not be finished before December. He is sure that the residents will continue to look into the greenery and that the wall will be covered by trees. In 2023, the preliminary work for the bridge construction is planned, and in 2024 to 2025 it will be installed directly behind the ten-meter wall and pushed across the Main River by means of floating pontoons. Several cranes would also be erected for this purpose.

A normal noise barrier is also being built opposite on Hahnstrasse in Frankfurt. And also behind the houses of the more southern Paul-Gerhard-Ring some trees will be cleared starting next week. Because also there for the new tracks the railroad embankment is piled up and widened. (Stefanie Wehr)

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