The bridge structure increases traffic safety on site and strengthens the connection of this high-volume cargo handling seaport to the hinterland. The construction work of the port company Niedersachsen Ports lasted a total of three years.
From now on, the new bridge at Berliner Strasse will run across the tracks on a safe and direct route. This replaces the level rail crossings running parallel to each other across the railway line between Brake and Nordenham and at the rail connector that leads to the Niedersachsen Quay in the port. “I am pleased to see that we can come together to inaugurate the bridge today. It is the result of an intensive cooperation and will strengthen the infrastructure of the port location Brake, and therefore the maritime value chain in Niedersachsen,” emphasizes Dr. Niels Kämpny of the Niedersachsen Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labor, Transport and Digitization. In 2014, the rail crossing participants, namely the City of Brake, DB Netz AG, and Niedersachsen Ports, jointly decided to build the bridge. The total costs amounted to eleven million Euros.
“The structure not only improves local logistics, but also offers additional advantages. Previous sources of danger were eliminated by the construction of the bridge, and the overall road safety was increased”, explains Holger Banik, Managing Director of Niedersachsen Ports GmbH & Co. KG and of JadeWeserPort Realisierungs GmbH & Co. KG. Now, vehicles no longer have to wait, as they did before, until the railway crossing gates open. They can drive directly over the tracks without waiting. This increases traffic flow for all road users, increases efficiency in the port and reduces exhaust gases. In addition, the noise pollution from traffic is reduced.
“The construction of the bridge demonstrates very clearly, what a modern port must be able to accomplish and what kind of performance it is able to deliver. It's by far not just all just about efficient quay and cargo handling systems. Our ports must be securely linked to other modes of transport by road, rail and inland waterways,” Banik added.
The Europe-wide award procedure for the construction of the 750-meter-long bridge was completed in October 2016. The consortium of the companies Hecker Bau and Depenbock Bau GmbH & Co. KG won the contract.
After intensive preparations, the bridging took place at the end of July and early August of last year (as we reported earlier). As a first step, the bridge’s substrate that carries the load of the roadway above and the weight of the vehicles crossing, was constructed. The panel consists of three fields; two so-called end fields and a center field. The individual parts of the bridge were merged into a single unit during extensive night work to ensure that the flow of traffic was not affected. A total of 2,500 m of foundation piles, 280 metric tons of concrete steel, and 85,000 m³ of sand were needed for the construction. During the course of the construction work, and especially at night, the mountains of sand and the bridge construction offered an interesting spectacle to the public.
As part of the celebration for the release of the bridge to traffic, Niedersachsen Ports officially transferred the bridge to the city of Brake as the competent public body of construction.
Cover Photo, from left to right: Detlef Barner (Head of Production Management of DB Netz AG in Bremen), Holger Banik (Managing Director of Niedersachsen Ports GmbH & Co KG and JadeWeserPort Realisierungs GmbH & Co. KG), Dr. Niels Kämpny (Niedersachsen Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labor, Transport and Digitization), and Michael Kurz (Mayor of the City of Brake). Release of the Bridge Berliner Strasse to Traffic in Brake.
Photo: Andreas Burmann/NPorts
Niedersachsen Ports is owner and operator of five seaports, seven island supply ports, plus three regional ports along the German North Sea shore. The registered office of the company is in Oldenburg. Through the branch offices in Brake, Cuxhaven (with satellite location Stade), Emden and Wilhelmshaven, Niedersachsen Ports is managing the port infrastructure in the large seaports of the State of Niedersachsen. In addition, the Branch Norden operates the supply ports for the East Frisian Islands. This way, Niedersachsen Ports is able to offer a multitude of port locations from one single source.