Saturday, June 4, 2016

Men at Work

Presently Freiburg is a major construction site. For two weeks four of our five streetcar lines between Bertoldsbrunnen (city center) and Stadttheater (municipal theater) are cut. The Städtischen Verkehrbetriebe VAG (municipal transport authorities) install a railroad crossing on Rotteckring for the future line running in front of the new university library. At the the same time they renew the rails in the neighborhood.

Look into Bertoldstraße.
The new railroad crossíng, aligning, measuring, and re-aligning.

New switches connect the Rotteckring line with Bertoldsbrunnen.
In the background the municipal theater and to the left the new university library.
You must take a march of nearly half a kilometer on a crowded narrow sidewalk between the streetcar stations Stadttheater and Bertoldsbrunnen along those fascinating construction activities. The pedestrian traffic is dense and so many people must take the walk that you are sure to run into persons you know what I did. However, standing there and chatting means a traffic jam for all the others passing by. Most are in a hurry hasting to make the junction between the streetcar lines ending or passing Bertoldsbrunnen and those terminating at Stadttheater.

Note the historical Pfennig in the pavement
Nevertheless, a few people just stop and watch the men at work.

Welding of the rail joints ...

... and grinding the rail surface flat afterwards.

Posing rail clamps. The new rails are provisionally supported by stone blocks.
Look between the feet of the man who is installing the rail clamps. Their fixing bolts
are then cast into a concrete bed and are tightened when the concrete is dry.
In 25 years from now it will be easy to replace just the worn out rails fixing
the new ones with the existing clamps. In the upper half of the photo note the finished
and already paved rail track on its concrete bed with a lateral rubber band against noise.

Addendum 1: On Monday, June 6, at 5 p.m. the normal streetcar schedule was re-established.

Note the railroad crossing in the background, the stub of the switch for the new line in front,
and the unfinished paving that will be completed during the coming weekends.
(©BZ/Thomas Kunz)

Addendum 2: On Friday, June 10, streetcar line 4 passes the finished crossing while to the left rail work continues on the new Rotteckring line and switches. The municipal theater and the new university library are in the background.

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