Renovating an underground railway system without weeks of construction and chaos caused by delays and diversions was previously unheard of. That is, until a unique concrete bolt emerged in Nuremberg.
The people of Nuremberg are proud of their underground system, which is among the most modern in Europe. The city, located in Bavaria, southern Germany, has the only underground network in Germany where two of the three lines operate automatically, without train drivers. Nuremberg trains travel the equivalent of the circumference of the earth twice each day, carrying more than one hundred million passengers per year.
After 40 years of continuous use, it comes as no surprise that a renovation of the track beds was required to ensure passenger safety. The main beam, also known as a concrete stringer, which attaches the tracks to the tunnel floor, had simply sustained damage in too many places.
This was a daunting issue for the provider of the Nuremberg metro services, VAG (Verkehrs-Aktiengesellschaft Nürnberg). Normally, metro companies need to completely shut down a track for weeks during the renovation of such concrete stringers. Employing water pressure to remove the concrete, it is a time-consuming and extremely dangerous job, considering the many power lines inside the tunnel.
Long delays caused by closed tunnels are costly for the track operators, adversely affecting train traffic and irritating passengers.
Coming to the rescue, a brand new innovation caught VAG’s attention just as it started planning the renovation. Local Nuremberg dowel and concrete bolt manufacturer TOGE Dübel won a railway innovation award for a new concept that enhances the sustainability of existing concrete bridges.
Present in the audience, VAG
representatives were intrigued and had the idea of trying the concept for the first time in an underground rail environment. Currently, work is under way at the first three stations: Bärenschanze, Gostenhof and Maximilianstrasse. Work on the second largest station in the network, the ‘Plärrer’, with 98,000 passengers daily, is planned for 2017.
Will joined Fastener + Fixing Magazine in 2007 and over the last 10 years has experienced every facet of the fastener sector - interviewing key figures within the industry and visiting leading companies and exhibitions around the globe.
Will manages the content strategy across all platforms and is the guardian for the high editorial standards that the Magazine is renowned.