City tunnel Leipzig

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Leipzig North – Leipzig Bayer Bf
Route of the City Tunnel Leipzig
Route number (DB) : 6382 ( Leipzig-Wahren – Leipzig Hbf (deep) )
6396 (Leipzig Nordkopf – Leipzig Bayer Bf)
6377 (Leipzig Bayer Bf – M-Gaschwitz)
6376 (Leipzig MDR – Leipzig Tabakmühle)
Route length: 3.187 + 0.458 km
Gauge : 1435 mm ( standard gauge )
Power system : 15 kV, 16.7 Hz  ~
Top speed: 80 km / h
Dual track : continuous
BSicon .svgBSicon STR.svg
from Trebnitz (Dessau)
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from Eilenburg
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6.410 Leipzig North
BSicon .svgBSicon SBRÜCKE.svg
Bundesstrasse 2 (Berlin Bridge)
BSicon STR + r.svgBSicon STR.svg
from Leipzig-Wahren and from Großkorbetha
BSicon WBRÜCKE2.svgBSicon WBRÜCKE2.svg
BSicon STR.svgBSicon ABZgl.svg
to Leipzig Hbf
BSicon STR.svgBSicon tSTRa.svg
4.400 Tunnel portal north
BSicon ABZgl.svgBSicon tKRZ.svg
to Leipzig Hbf
BSicon tSTRa.svgBSicon tSTR.svg
Northwest tunnel portal
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North flyover structure
3,649 Leipzig Hbf (deep)
3.000 Leipzig market
2,438 Leipzig Wilhelm-Leuschner-Platz
1.7 00
Leipzig Bayer Bf
0.500 Tunnel portal south
Station, station
1.600 Leipzig MDR
Road bridge
Bundesstrasse 2 (Richard-Lehmann-Strasse)
Krbw Süd, LCV / 6376 to Abzw Tabakmühle
Route - straight ahead
to Leipzig-Connewitz

The City-Tunnel Leipzig is a railway project to redesign local rail passenger transport in the Leipzig railway junction . The centerpiece is a double-track, electrified main line , which was completed in 2013 and runs from Leipzig North to Leipzig Bayerischer Bahnhof . It crosses the city center in a tunnel between Leipzig Central Station and Bavarian Railway Station, with four underground stations on the route. The distance from the south portal to the north portal is 3187 meters, the side branch to the north-west portal is 458 meters. Including ramps and the south exit, the project has a total length of 5.3 kilometers. In addition, extensive network-supplementing measures to upgrade the connecting routes and stations were part of the project.

The tunnel is used by most lines of the Central German S-Bahn . The attractiveness of local public transport is to be increased by improving offers and - above all in the north-south direction - faster connections .

Construction work began in July 2003 and commissioning was initially planned for the end of 2009. The tunnel was officially opened on December 14, 2013, and scheduled operation began on December 15, 2013. The cost of the project is estimated at 935 million euros.



In 1892, the state railway administrations of Prussia and Saxony, the city of Leipzig and the imperial postal administration agreed in a contract to build a central station (Hauptbahnhof). The Bavarian station was to be retained as the southern station and, if possible, be connected to the central station by subway. Intermediate stops were planned under the station forecourt and Augustusplatz.

North portal of the unfinished tunnel from 1915 (2010)

To implement this, an underpaved railway was to be built, which would run from Borsdorf via the main train station and the Bavarian train station as well as Connewitz to Gaschwitz and be operated electrically by means of a power rail . The Saxon State Railroad had planned a tunnel to the Bavarian train station as early as 1909 when the construction of Leipzig Central Station began . In the years 1913 to 1915, an entrance ramp from Dresden with a length of 140 meters and a 675 or 710 meter long tunnel section were built below tracks 22 and 23 and below the station building. The tunnel ended 8.5 meters behind the station building under the inner city ring and was temporarily closed there. Below the cross platform and today's bus station platforms were built over a length of 40 meters, an extension under the ring was planned and already prepared for the tunneling over a length of around 100 meters.

With the outbreak of the First World War , work came to a standstill. Planning was resumed in 1934. The project was about to start at the beginning of the Second World War , but was then canceled.

During the Second World War , the tunnel and the underground stop were converted into air raid shelters . During the bombing raid on Leipzig on July 7, 1944, there were two strikes that destroyed the tunnel in two places and thus divided it into three parts, killing numerous people. During the reconstruction of the main station, the area around the second impact was walled up, the stopping point located under the east hall was converted into a DEFA Zeitkino and used in this way until 1992. During the main station renovation between 1995 and 2000, the parts of the tunnel below the station concourse were demolished, the remains of the tunnel under the station apron and under the first meters of the station concourse were closed, but were preserved.

Shortly after the Second World War, plans for underground city crossings began again in 1946. The tunnel was to be built using the cut-and-cover method. This made it possible to achieve a curve radius that was large enough for long-distance rail operations. An S-Bahn line and a long-distance railway tunnel in the direction of Munich were planned. The plans for the latter were given up a few years later with the division of Germany . By 1967, three variants had been developed for the S-Bahn tunnel, which, like today's tunnel, were no longer to originate from the Dresden line but from the Magdeburg and Berlin lines and had a station under the west hall of the main station and under the market . At the beginning of the 1970s, a new attempt was made to advance the planning of the project. A route was planned from the west side of the main train station via Reichsstraße , Neumarkt, Roßplatz and Windmühlenstraße to the Bavarian train station. In addition to traffic engineering and geological studies, the necessity of the project was also demonstrated. Due to the expected high financial and technical effort, the plans were not implemented by the end of the GDR .


In the years after German reunification, loose rounds of talks led to a committee made up of Deutsche Bahn, Free State of Saxony, Messe Leipzig and the City of Leipzig, which campaigned for the implementation of the project.

After German reunification, the newly established Saxon State Ministry for Economic Affairs and Labor dealt with the long-term development of the S-Bahn systems in Leipzig and Dresden. After an initial inventory, an inner city tunnel was considered for Leipzig. According to the results of the preliminary planning , an S-Bahn network, which is already necessary for the greater Halle / Leipzig area, was not conceivable without a trunk line tunnel. In 1991, the then Transport Minister Kajo Schommer, Federal Transport Minister Krause , proposed, among other things, a four-track railway tunnel with separate tubes for long-distance and local traffic under Leipzig. The mainline tunnel was to be built as part of the German Unity Transport Project No. 8 from federal funds, the regional transport tunnel from funds from the Municipal Transport Financing Act (GVFG). The new Erfurt-Leipzig / Halle would be for early consideration of the room Naumburg been led to the Bavarian station and from there to Leipzig Hauptbahnhof underground. This variant was finally rejected after examination by the planning company Bahnbau Deutsche Einheit . The further considerations thus concentrated on a local traffic tunnel through which individual long-distance journeys should also be handled.

The Federal Ministry of Transport finally commissioned the then Deutsche Reichsbahn to plan a S-Bahn system for the greater Leipzig / Halle area. The realization of the proposed tunnel, on the other hand, was made dependent on the result of a profitability calculation. The planning costs of the tunnel were borne by the states of Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt. In 1992 the Dresden engineering office Schlegel – Dr. Spiekermann received the order to work out a feasibility study for the project. At the same time, Intraplan was supposed to prepare the first traffic studies. Preliminary planning and profitability studies were completed in 1993 with a positive result. The project was then included in the GVFG federal program.

In 1994 and 1995, the Free State of Saxony, Deutsche Bahn AG and the City of Leipzig each made available DM 5 million (around 2.6 million euros) for in-depth studies. Based on the recommendations of the “Requirements plan for rail-based public transport of the Free State of Saxony”, a large number of investigations were carried out for a tunnel under Leipzig's inner city. Based on this, a study “S-Bahn Leipzig - Citytunnel” was presented in 1995. During the construction of the shopping center in the main train station, provisions were already made for the tunnel on the west side of the building. The cost of around four million euros was pre-financed by the Free State of Saxony.

In 1996, Deutsche Bahn and the Free State of Saxony announced their support for the project. In 1996 a construction and financing contract was signed. In June 1996, the Free State of Saxony, Deutsche Bahn AG, the City of Leipzig and the Leipziger Messegesellschaft signed the partnership agreement for the establishment of the planning company S-Bahn Tunnel Leipzig GmbH . The first three shareholders named each held 30 percent of the new company, and Leipziger Messe the remaining 10 percent. As part of the new company, the technical feasibility, the usefulness and the financing should be examined more closely.

In 1996, after a Europe-wide invitation to tender, the engineering group S-Bahn-Tunnel Leipzig received the order for the preliminary planning , which was completed in the third quarter of 1997. The standardized assessment in spring 1998 showed a benefit-cost factor of 2.7. This is based on eleven S-Bahn trains per hour and direction during rush hour, two regional express lines each hour and one long-distance train per hour and direction. The results of an internal profitability calculation presented by Deutsche Bahn at the end of 1998 expected additional income and savings at an amount that should lead to a reduction in the need for subsidies per train-kilometer traveled.

The state traffic plan of Saxony from 1999 expected the tunnel south of the main station to be loaded with 85,000 passengers per day. The documents for the planning approval procedure were laid out in spring 1999. After a small number of objections , the planning approval decision was issued in May 2000. He was not complained and therefore final. This was followed by preparatory measures such as the relocation of lines, archaeological excavations and bombing of explosives.

In autumn 2001 the Saxon Transport Minister Kajo Schommer criticized the “lack of commitment” of Deutsche Bahn in a conversation with Federal Transport Minister Kurt Bodewig . Schommer offered that the state could become the building contractor for the shell of the city tunnel. In addition, it was stated in the minutes of the ministerial meeting: "The country thus bears all the risks". In a framework agreement between the project partners in 2002, it was accordingly determined that the Free State of Saxony should bear the financial risks of the construction. The Saxon Cabinet confirmed this procedure on March 18, 2003, but in return demanded direct influence on the implementation of the project. Ultimately, the Free State of Saxony, which was represented by DEGES, became the client for the shell construction of the tunnel and the stations, while Deutsche Bahn took over the railway equipment and the connection of the tunnel to the existing network. On May 23, 2003, the Saxon Minister of Economic Affairs Martin Gillo , Railway Chief Hartmut Mehdorn , State Secretary Iris Gleicke (Federal Ministry of Transport) and Lord Mayor Wolfgang Tiefensee signed the project contract.

The S-Bahn Tunnel Leipzig GmbH was dissolved in November 2003.


Construction site Marktplatz (February 2006)

The Leipzig City Tunnel was built in seven modules:

  • Module 1: Shell construction of both tunnel tubes and cross passage;
  • Module 2: Shell construction of the three ramp structures;
  • Module 3: New construction of the above-ground stop “Semmelweisstrasse / Media City”;
  • Module 4: Shell construction of the four underground stops at Bayerischer Bahnhof, Wilhelm-Leuschner-Platz, Markt and Hauptbahnhof without an inner shell;
  • Module 5: Inner shell, space-forming expansion of the underground stopping points including technical building equipment;
  • Module 6: Railway equipment and track connection of the tunnel to the existing network including measures for landscape maintenance and other final work as well
  • Module 7: Additional investments to expand the existing railway infrastructure.

On July 9, 2003, construction officially began with the first hammering at the new Museum of Fine Arts. Federal Transport Minister Stolpe , Saxony's Prime Minister Georg Milbradt , Lord Mayor Tiefensee and DB board member Klaus Daubertshäuser attended the ceremony. When construction began, the tunnel was scheduled to go into operation at the end of 2009. At the beginning there were mainly soil exploration measures and the laying of lines, and construction of the underground stations began in early 2005.

At the end of March 2005, the first building preparations began in the track area of ​​the main train station. This created space for the following excavation pit. In December 2006, the construction of the ramps at the main station was interrupted after cracks were discovered in the station's outbuildings. Between February 17 and March 25, 2007, two auxiliary bridges, each 105 meters in length, were erected in the main station as part of the construction; around 1,400 meters of track and eight switches were rebuilt.

Shell-ready tunnel tube (May 2008)

On January 11, 2007, the symbolic start of the drilling of the first tube by the tunnel boring machine called Leonie with a ceremony at the Bayerischer Bahnhof . The tunnel sponsor was Angelika Meeth-Milbradt, wife of the then Saxon Prime Minister Georg Milbradt. The machine driving of the first tube began on January 15, 2007 at Bayerischer Bahnhof and was completed on March 10, 2008 at the main station. After the tunnel boring machine had been transported back to the Bayerischer Bahnhof, the driving of the second tube began on May 9, 2008. On October 31, 2008, the machine in the second tube reached the main station.

Commissioning was expected in 2011 at the end of 2007. In October 2008 it was announced that the commissioning would probably be postponed to the end of 2012, as there were problems with the subsurface in the area of ​​the main train station and delays in the approval process in connection with measures to supplement the network .

The dismissal of an unsuccessful bidder's complaint in December 2009 against the award proposal for interior work delayed commissioning for another year to the end of 2013.

The shell of the four underground stations of the City Tunnel and the new Leipzig Nord / Berliner Brücke and Leipzig MDR stops were completed in January 2011. This was followed by the interior design of the tunnel and the stations as well as the expansion of the railway technology. In mid-February 2009, the expansion of the five stations was put out to tender across Europe. The contract ran from the beginning of February 2010 to the end of November 2011. It was awarded to Ed at the end of 2009 for 63.1 million euros Züblin AG (Dresden) awarded. Two companies participated in the tender.

The tunnel passes under a total of 61 buildings, 22 of which are listed. 31 buildings were protected by active security measures. From 2003 to 2013, a total of 9 software changes and 36 construction changes at the Leipzig railway junction were required to integrate the tunnel.


From September 25 to 29, 2013, the main train station was completely closed in order to integrate the city tunnel into the existing network. This milestone marked the end of the work on the track infrastructure in the tunnel and its technical commissioning. This was followed by a trial run, the first phase of which began on October 1 with the testing of emergency scenarios and the optimization of the stopping positions. From October 15 until the opening in December, rail operations were rehearsed according to the timetable and under regular conditions.

Overall commissioning took place on December 15, 2013. The tunnel went into operation as the heart of the 430-kilometer-long route network of the S-Bahn Central Germany with 104 stations. The connection between Halle and Altenburg was accelerated by 35 minutes, the one between Halle and Gaschwitz by 39 minutes.


In 2014, 2015 and 2016, increases in passenger numbers were observed on all lines. On the S-Bahn Mitteldeutschland, 57,765 passengers per day were counted in the S-Bahn network in 2014. The number of passengers (Monday to Friday) on the Central German S-Bahn increased from 57,765 (2014) to 60,421 (2015). The level on which the traffic forecast for the city tunnel is based has thus been reached. There were almost 47,000 people entering and leaving the city tunnel at the four stations in 2016, around 5,500 more than in 2014.

A traffic study by the TU Dresden came to the result that the expected market shares of public passenger transport had not been achieved by summer 2015. After a year and a half of operation, the market share of public transport has increased by 0.5 percentage points to 17.6 percent. The minimum headway time in the tunnel can be reduced to up to 3.5 minutes, including a buffer at the main station of 1.5 minutes.

A rescue exercise took place in the tunnel on the night of September 12, 2019.

Construction engineering

Shield drive

Tunnel boring machine in the Wilhelm-Leuschner-Platz station (August 2007)

The two single-track tunnels, each 1438 meters long, between the Bayerischer Bahnhof and Hauptbahnhof stations were constructed using the shield driving method using a 65-meter-long tunnel boring machine . The tunnel boring machine was started in the construction pit at the Bayerischer Bahnhof, from where it worked its way to the main train station. There it was dismantled and rebuilt at the Bayerischer Bahnhof, after which it started a second time. The excavation diameter was nine meters.

The tunnel lies in the groundwater with a pressure height of around 16 meters to the bottom of the tunnel. Therefore it was driven up with a liquid-supported shield (hydro shield). In this method, which is the working face supported by a liquid to a collapse of the soil to prevent the under excess pressure reduction chamber. The dissolved during excavation soil along with this bentonite - suspension pumped. The loosened soil is separated off in a separation plant outside the tunnel, the bentonite suspension is reprocessed and then used again. The actual tunnel was constructed parallel to the advance. For this purpose, 1.80 meter wide and 40 centimeter thick segment rings were laid, each consisting of seven segments and a keystone and weighing around 47 tons. The inner diameter of the tube produced in this way is 7.90 meters. About 13,000 segments were required for the two tunnel tubes.

Station construction

Production of the shell for the Markt station (May 2008)

Several different technologies were used to erect the station structure at the main train station. While the northern part in the area of ​​the longitudinal platform hall could be erected in an open construction in a construction pit made of stiffened diaphragm walls , the main building with the service center had to be crossed under the miners . For this it was necessary to erect construction pit walls in the form of a load-bearing body of frost , which during the construction period both absorbed the loads of the service center above and also protected against incoming groundwater. These ice walls, anchored back and secured by shotcrete, were 5 to 9 meters thick, 95 meters long and 12 meters high. In order to be able to build it, a small tunnel boring machine was used to create two 100 and 120 meter long tunnels made of precast pipes with an inner diameter of 2.40 meters to the left and right of the later station structure. From these tunnels it was finally possible to insert 1232 freezing lances into the ground. Along with an ammonia - compression refrigeration system with a cooling capacity of around 1,104  kW was withdrawn from the bottom of continuous heat, so that the ground water froze. In the protection of these walls, the excavation pit could finally be drained and dug in sections. To cross under the traffic route of the inner city ring in front of the main station, a 97 meter long and 28 meter wide excavation pit had to be built using the top-down method. The two-phase diaphragm walls, which reach a depth of 29 meters, were built in sections to minimize traffic restrictions. They carry a massive reinforced concrete ceiling and later became part of the station structure itself.

The other stations were built entirely using the cut-and-cover method, as were the tunnel sections south of the Bayerischer Bahnhof station and north of the Hauptbahnhof station. For the erection of the station shell at Wilhelm-Leuschner-Platz and on the market, the so-called cover construction was used. The construction pit at the Bayerischer Bahnhof was built using the wall-floor construction method and, in its northern section, also served as a starting pit for the tunnel boring machine.

Securing the building

CGV shaft in Härtelstrasse (2006)

When building a tunnel using the shield driving method, a subsidence trough is to be expected after the tunnel boring machine has passed, since soil deprivation (subsidence of the soil after tunneling or mining) cannot be completely avoided even with careful work. Examinations prior to the construction of the city tunnel revealed different widths of the depression depending on the subsoil conditions, and finally a corridor width of 65 meters was determined. In this area, the maximum reduction was to be limited to 20 millimeters for the first and 30 millimeters for the second tunnel journey. Around 60 buildings are located in this area and have been divided into actively and passively secured buildings. The latter were monitored and documented before, during and after the construction phase.

With around 30 buildings to be actively secured, it was necessary to use technical measures to compensate for the expected subsidence. The Compensation Grouting (CGV) procedure was used. In doing so, a total of 15 so-called CGV shafts were built at various locations, from which horizontal boreholes were made in several layers, each with a length of up to 65 meters. Valve pipes were installed in the horizontal boreholes and through these a cement suspension was pressed into the ground in order to first compact the ground and close any existing cavities. In a second phase, the buildings were raised by up to five millimeters in a controlled manner by further pumping in, in order to compensate for the subsidence expected during the shield drive. Any further subsidence during the actual advance was compensated for by further uplift injections. The upward and downward movements were controlled by an electronic hose level system with an accuracy of 0.25 millimeters, around 1350 hose levels had to be installed before the CGV drilling work began. Even after the excavation has been completed, the houses will continue to be checked regularly and, if necessary, additional grouting will be carried out.

In parts of Petersstrasse, an approximately 250-meter-long supply tunnel from GDR times was used for grouting. It starts at St. Peter's Arch and ends at the market.

Costs and financing

Early estimation and financing considerations

The preliminary planning and economic feasibility studies initiated at the beginning of the 1990s ended with a positive result, so that in 1995 costs of around DM 1 billion for the tunnel and a benefit-cost factor of 2.4 were announced for the first time. Another standardized assessment took place in 1997 and determined a factor of 2.7. The project was thus eligible for funding from the federal government, whereby the planned joint use of the tunnel by long-distance traffic should improve the profitability of the project. With the inclusion in the GVFG federal program after completion of the preliminary planning, the federal government should bear 60 percent of the costs, the two states involved each 40 percent of the costs incurred in the respective country. An increase of over 30,000  transport cases per day was expected.

The renovation of the Leipzig-Connewitz train station was one of the additional network measures (July 2012)

The first cost overview in the amount of 915 million DM was the basis for the upcoming financing considerations. These provided for the project to be financed either entirely from public funds (EU, federal government, Free State of Saxony, DB, City of Leipzig) or partially with private funds as part of a public-private partnership (PPP). Due to the additional interest and repayment costs, there were early concerns about the PPP variant. After the federal government launched an EU-financed program to expand the transport infrastructure in the new federal states in the first half of 1999, DM 240 million from this fund was to be used for the project. As a result of the financing talks with the federal government that began in January 2000, the expected costs of 915 million DM were to be financed by the EU, Deutsche Bahn, the federal government, and state and local funds. The stated costs included both the tunnel route itself and additional network measures . This includes, for example, the electrification of the Borna – Geithain railway line and construction work between Engelsdorf and Gaschwitz.

First cost increase and financing agreement

A framework financing agreement submitted in 2000 was prepared for ratification, but not concluded after Deutsche Bahn initiated another cost review due to general cost increases. The original DM 915 million calculation was discarded due to high risks. Due to changed, conservative construction methods, increased unit prices and much higher fire protection requirements, the expected project costs (including measures to supplement the network) were estimated at 1.118 billion DM (571.62 million euros). These total costs were used as the basis for the financing agreement signed in March 2002. The following financing was stipulated therein:

  • Federal government: 191.73 million euros
  • Free State of Saxony: 182.02 million euros
  • European Union ( ERDF program ): 168.73 million euros
  • Deutsche Bahn: 16.36 million euros
  • City of Leipzig: 12.78 million euros

In 2006, the approved ERDF funds were reduced at the end of the funding period from 168.73 to 127.59 million euros, which have now been fully drawn down. For the follow-up funding period from 2007 to 2013, additional funds of 77.3 million euros were approved on July 29, 2011 for the technical equipment of the tunnel and for the expansion of the underground stations. A further 20 million euros were approved in May 2013 for measures to supplement the network (including route electrification).

Further cost increases

In December 2006 , DEGES , which was used as the client's representative, had already calculated total costs of 585 million euros. A risk analysis by Deutsche Bahn at the time assumed possible additional costs of up to 73 million euros. In December 2007, the amount of the additional costs was estimated at 133 million euros, so that total costs of 705 million euros were now expected. According to the Saxon Transport Minister Morlok, additional costs of around 200 million euros were clearly recognizable from the start.

After the estimated total costs had risen to 893 million euros by the end of November 2009, the Saxon Court of Auditors examined the project. A year later, a further increase in costs to finally 960 million euros became known. Of this, the Free State of Saxony would have borne 495.6 million euros, the European Union 224.8 million, the Federal Republic of Germany 210 million, Deutsche Bahn 17.9 million, the City of Leipzig 7.2 million and the Leipzig Local Transport Association 4.2 million .

At the beginning of May 2014, the Saxon Ministry of Economic Affairs reduced the forecast total costs from 960 to 935 million euros. According to the Ministry, the involvement of the Saxon Court of Auditors in 2009 had a positive effect on further cost development. Among other things, the additional network measures are cheaper than recently expected. The financing share of the Free State of Saxony in the supplementary network measures was reduced from 98.4 to 80.5 million euros. The Free State's share of the total costs is expected to be 470.5 million euros (as of May 2014). A final invoice is pending (as of May 2014).

It was contractually stipulated that the federal government only contributed to the additional costs within the framework of the general rate of increase in wages and prices. The additional costs are mainly borne by the Free State of Saxony. Its share increased by 316 million euros. The federal contribution increased by 72.6 million euros, including 56 million euros from ERDF funds. Deutsche Bahn took on additional costs of around 1.5 million euros.


The significantly increased construction costs and the long construction time were criticized from various sides. The Saxon Court of Auditors pointed to the underestimated planning costs and risks, overly optimistic scheduling and the unfavorable agreement for the Free State, according to which the Free State's share rose from originally 182 million euros to almost 500 million euros, the costs of the city Leipzig, however, remained unchanged. Politicians like the Leipzig Green Felix Ekardt questioned the focus of state funds on this major project.

Furthermore, the partially resulting longer travel times from the eastern urban area as well as the communities along the Leipzig – Dresden railway line were criticized as a result of the unfavorable introduction of these lines from the south into the city tunnel.

Critics doubt that, given the S-Bahn trains that run every 5 minutes, a meaningful mixed operation with long-distance traffic in the tunnel is even possible, although this was included in the cost-benefit analysis . Due to the decision to expand the route via Bad Lausick (instead of Borna) for traffic in the direction of Chemnitz, long-distance trains to Chemnitz would not use the city tunnel anyway. There are also no specific plans for long-distance traffic lines through the tunnel in the direction of Zwickau and Hof.

During the construction work, dealers in the city center complained in some cases of significant declines in sales and exceedance of noise protection limits.

Staircase in the new pedestrian tunnel to the city center, status after commissioning

There was also criticism of the execution of the Leipzig Hbf (deep) tunnel platform. This was connected to the lowest level of the shopping center under the cross platform of the main train station via a pedestrian tunnel. The pedestrian tunnel itself was realized with a staircase structure; it was therefore not passable for wheelchair users and people with prams. The tunnel platform could therefore only be reached by the persons concerned via an elevator on the inner city side or at the north end from the western platform hall of the main station. According to the construction management, no barrier-free solution was provided during the tendering process, and retrofitting is currently (2013) not possible.

In the meantime, the stairs in the pedestrian tunnel have been made barrier-free by installing an elevator. It went into operation in December 2016. The tram platforms are still only accessible for the disabled by crossing lanes.

Route description


Tunnel ramp and north-west portal at the main train station (2013)
Driver's cab perspective on a S-Bahn in the tunnel

The route runs in the form of an arch almost in a north-south direction under Leipzig city center. The tunnel itself consists of two double-track tunnel branches north of the main station with the north and north-west portals . A ramp structure is located in front of each of these. Both tunnel branches unite at no height in an underground overpass structure and then double-track to the Leipzig Hauptbahnhof station (deep) . The two single-track tunnels begin south of the station and lead under Petersstrasse and Windmühlenstrasse to the Leipzig Bayerischer Bahnhof (deep) station and are interrupted on the way by the Leipzig Markt and Leipzig Wilhelm-Leuschner-Platz stations . To the south of the Leipzig Bayerischer Bahnhof (deep) station , there is a double-track tunnel, closed off by the south portal and an adjoining tunnel ramp. The next station Leipzig MDR (planning name Semmelweisstraße ) is already outside the tunnel, but still in the trough of the tunnel ramp. To the south of this station, the line separates at the south overpass structure into two double-track branches towards Leipzig-Connewitz and Leipzig-Stötteritz.

The length of the underground section between the north and south portals is 3,187 meters. There are also 458 meters from the junction north of the Hauptbahnhof station to the north-west portal. The tunnel lengths between the stations are 434 meters between the main station and Markt, 404 meters between Markt and Wilhelm-Leuschner-Platz and 628 meters between Wilhelm-Leuschner-Platz and Bayerischer Bahnhof. In the latter section of the tunnel, due to its length, a cross passage had to be built between the two tubes for safety reasons .

The route was designed with a minimum curve radius of around 500 meters for a speed of 80 km / h. The maximum longitudinal gradient is 40 per thousand in the ramp areas and around 25 per thousand in the tunnel area. The northern ramp has a gradient of 40 per mille, the southern ramp of 35 per mille.

The coverage of the tunnel varies between five and twelve meters. The smallest distance between the foundation of the building and the tunnel ceiling is under the Petersbogen (underground car park) at 2.20 meters. The tunnel stations are 17 to 22 meters below the site.

Integration into the existing network

South crossing structure under construction (2008)

In the north, the routes from Bitterfeld ( route 6411 ), from Eilenburg ( route 6360 ) and from Leipzig / Halle Airport ( route 5919 ) connect to the tunnel. In the northwest, the lines from Halle / Saale ( S-Bahn route 6382 ) and from Leutzsch ( route 6367 ) are connected. To connect the branches from the north and north-west without any height , an underground crossing structure was built between the two tunnel portals and the Hauptbahnhof (deep) station, in which the directional track to Halle / Saale runs over the two tracks of the north ramp. The unbundling of the lines from Halle and from Leutzsch takes place at the newly built MTh intersection structure , named after the Magdeburg-Thuringian freight yard that was previously located here. Furthermore, a new connecting track was built north of the Leipzig Nord station to merge the line from Eilenburg into the line from Bitterfeld without any elevation.

In addition, the two vault bridges over the Parthe and the parallel bridges over Berliner Strasse and Rackwitzer Strasse have been demolished and rebuilt since summer 2012 . For monument conservation reasons, the bridge on Rackwitzer Straße is designed based on the original structure. Completion is planned in stages by the end of 2015, around 30 million euros will be invested in this.

To integrate the tunnel in the south, the south junction was built, where the routes to Stötteritz and Connewitz extend without any elevation.

Operating points

Together with the city tunnel, four underground and two above-ground stations were built. These are approached by the S-Bahn Central Germany trains. The platform height is uniformly 550 millimeters. All stations are barrier-free accessible by means of lifts or ramps ( Leipzig MDR station ) .

Hp Leipzig North

Leipzig North

The new above-ground station Leipzig Nord (abbreviation LLN ) is part of the north integration of the city tunnel into the existing network. The planning name was Theresienstraße . A 140 meter long central platform was built north of the Berlin bridge. The platform is on the tracks of the line from Bitterfeld , which were relocated in this area. Furthermore, the route from Eilenburg connects directly north of the station without any elevation . Access is via stairs and ramps from the existing pedestrian tunnel, which connects Theresienstraße with Mockauer Straße. In order to gain the space required for the planned island platform and to be able to move the previous Leipzig – Eilenburg track sideways, the pedestrian tunnel on the west side had to be extended. It is noticeable for an access point close to the center that there is neither adequate weather protection nor a train destination display.

Operationally, it is a station part of the main station, the southern border of which lies behind the south overpass structure on Richard-Lehmann-Straße. The 6396 tunnel route from the Bavarian train station ends in Leipzig North.

Leipzig Hbf (deep) with Bombardier Twindexx (2017)
Crossing structure north

Leipzig Hbf (deep)

The new Leipzig Hbf (deep) tunnel platform is located in the western area of ​​Leipzig Central Station, under the former platform tracks 3 to 5 of the terminus. It runs in a north-south direction. The new platform tracks 1 and 2 are located on the 215-meter-long central platform. It begins roughly in the middle of the platform hall, crosses under the cross platform, the main building and the inner city ring and ends on the south side of Willy-Brandt-Platz on Nikolaistraße.

The tunnel platform has two entrances. From the cross platform it can be reached via the large atrium , where there is a transition to long-distance and regional traffic above ground. At the southern end of the platform there is a distribution level and the newly built pedestrian tunnel under the inner city ring. From this there are exits to the shopping promenade in the main train station, to the tram stops and to the northern city center on Nikolaistraße. A total of ten escalators and three elevators have been installed, and the tunnel station also has two emergency exits.

The wall surfaces of the station are clad with natural stone panels, the ceilings with a steel and aluminum facade.

To the north of the underground station there is an underground overpass structure and the north and west ramps. In the direction of the north ramp, there is the structural option of extending the platform to 400 meters.

Leipzig Market (2016)

Leipzig market

The Leipzig Markt stop (abbreviation LLMK ) is located directly below the market square in a north-south direction at a depth of 22 meters. It has a 140 meter long central platform. A north and a south entrance lead to the surface. While an elevator is integrated in the north entrance, there is a sales point "S-Punkt" of the S-Bahn Central Germany in the south entrance hall. A total of six escalators provide easy access, and there are also two emergency exits.

The wall surfaces are clad with terracotta tiles. Due to their inclination, they are prone to pollution. At the southern entrance, the historical staircase of the former underground exhibition center with its massive natural stone blocks and Art Deco elements was faithfully rebuilt and incorporated. Two panorama windows with seating steps in the southern vestibule allow a direct view of the tracks and platforms. The backward-sloping wall cladding panels are noticeably soiled by the accumulating dust, and they can hardly be cleaned under operating conditions.

Leipzig Wilhelm-Leuschner-Platz (2013)

Leipzig Wilhelm-Leuschner-Platz

The Leipzig Wilhelm-Leuschner-Platz stop (abbreviation LLWP ) extends in a north-south direction at a depth of around 20 meters under the Martin-Luther-Ring to the middle of Wilhelm-Leuschner-Platz. The 140-meter-long central platform is accessible via a north entrance on Petersstrasse to the southern city center and a south entrance on Wilhelm-Leuschner-Platz. There is no direct access from the tram stop at Martin-Luther-Ring . Each of the two entrances has an elevator and four escalators. An emergency exit is also integrated in each case.

The architect Max Dudler chose exposed concrete and glass as the main building materials for the station. The wall and ceiling facade consists of almost 130,000 glass blocks and is illuminated from behind with around 700 lights. On November 13, 2013 the station was awarded the Architecture Prize of the City of Leipzig for the Promotion of Building Culture 2013 .

Leipzig Bayerischer Bahnhof (2013)

Leipzig Bayer Bf (deep)

The new Leipzig Bayer Bf station is located directly under the site of the former terminus of the same name. Its historic portico now stands at right angles directly on the station. The 140 meter long central platform is 20 meters deep. The north entrance leads to Bayrischer Platz, the south entrance initially only led to Straße des 18. Oktober . Only since autumn 2016 has there been access on the south side from Kohlenstraße and thus to Südvorstadt, the main entrance before the tunnel construction. Both entrances each have an elevator, the north entrance also has two escalators. There are also two emergency exits.

The station walls are clad with silver-colored aluminum panels, an integrated colored light band with changing light colors extends over the entire length of the platform. The two access structures are designed with exposed concrete and a glass roof; colored cross struts loosen them up.

The south ramp and the south portal of the city tunnel are immediately south of the train station.

Hp Leipzig MDR, behind the tunnel ramp towards Leipzig Bayer Bf (2014)

Leipzig MDR

The above-ground station Leipzig MDR (abbreviation LMDR ) follows outside the tunnel, but still in the cut of the south ramp . It is part of the southern integration of the city tunnel into the existing network. The planning name was Semmelweisstrasse . Two 140 meter long side platforms were built . These are located immediately south of Semmelweisstrasse, which crosses the railroad tracks here and was newly built as a district connection in this area and connects Kurt-Eisner-Strasse with Zwickauer Strasse. Access to the platforms is via stairs and ramps.

Operationally, the entire area of ​​the tunnel, the adjoining tunnel south ramp and the points of the flyover structure south are part of the Leipzig Hbf station.

Technical equipment


Slab track on a heavy mass-spring system at the Markt stop (2013)

A slab track of the type Rheda 2000 is used in the tunnel over a total of around 7,260 meters . The two turnouts north of the Hauptbahnhof station are also built in slab track, as are the tunnel sections of the northern and southern ramp areas. The track systems outside the tunnel for integration into the existing network were built using conventional ballast superstructures . This also applies to six points in front of the southern flyover structure.

To reduce the transmission of vibrations from rail operations, differently designed mass-spring systems (MFS) are installed in the tunnel . In the southern section, between the Bayerischer Bahnhof and Wilhelm-Leuschner-Platz stations, a fully supported lightweight MFS is used over a length of around 1260 meters. North of this to the main train station, differently coordinated heavy MFS were built on individual bearings over a length of around 2800 meters.

power supply

Contact rail overhead line and special signal design at the Wilhelm-Leuschner-Platz stop (2013)

The lines are electrified with traction current (15 kilovolt 16.7  Hertz ) to provide traction energy. The catenary system in the tunnel and in the underground stations is a special design using an overhead conductor rail . Their length is 7450 meters. Outside of the tunnel section is a conventional chain drive of the type Re 100 for use. Diesel-powered vehicles are not allowed to enter the tunnel as planned.

The supply of all other electrotechnical systems is ensured by five transformer stations and the associated emergency power systems . The entire tunnel is equipped with safety lighting and electrants .

Control and safety technology

The tunnel is controlled by the electronic interlocking (ESTW) Leipzig Hbf (west side), type Alcatel. To reduce the fire load in the tunnel, part of the interlocking systems has been relocated to the Connewitz ESTW. The entire tunnel including the adjoining section with the junction on Richard-Lehmann-Straße is part of the Leipzig Hbf station, the tracks are station tracks. There are routes in both directions on both tracks, but the block division is less dense than the normal direction of travel. The subsequent lines in the direction of Connewitz and Stötteritz are appropriately equipped for track changing operations. For more flexible operational management, there is a double track connection in the area of ​​the Richard-Lehmann-Straße junction. A special design is sometimes used in the tunnel for the Ks light signals . The automatic track vacancy detection is carried out by axle counters .

The train radio communication takes place via GSM-R base stations. In addition, emergency call stations are installed in the tunnel.

Clearance profile

The clearance profile corresponds to the requirements of the railway building and operating regulations for mixed traffic. For the single-track tubes between the underground station structures, tube cross-sections with a diameter of 8.25 to 9.00 meters were examined and a cross-section with a minimum diameter of 8.82 meters (excavated cross-section) was selected for implementation. The inner radius (without structural usable space) is 3.51 meters. In the double-track tunnel sections (south of the Bayerischer Bahnhof station and north of the Hauptbahnhof station), a rectangular profile with a track center distance of 4.00 meters , an inner width of 10.20 meters and a height of 5.70 meters above the top edge of the rails was created.

Operating program

Before construction began, Deutsche Bahn assumed a capacity of eleven S-Bahn trains, two regional express trains and one long-distance train per hour and direction. Four S-Bahn lines were to run at a basic rate of 30 minutes and, in some cases, were to be reduced to 15-minute intervals during rush hour . For the Halle – Leipzig – Markkleeberg line, a twenty-minute cycle was planned during rush hour. According to the planning status of June 2007, up to ten S-Bahn, two regional and one long-distance train pairs should run per hour. The S1 should run every twenty minutes, the four other lines with intervals between 30 and 120 minutes.

Since the new network of S-Bahn Central Germany started operating on December 15, 2013, six S-Bahn lines have been running through the City Tunnel and now occupy it with twelve trains per hour and direction. They serve all tunnel stations every 5 minutes.

In addition, until December 2015, there were temporarily individual long-distance trains that only stopped at the tunnel platforms of Leipzig Hauptbahnhof. They ran through the City-Tunnel, as there was a lack of travel options, especially between routes 6367 in the direction of Großkorbetha and LC / 6363 in the direction of Dresden . Long-distance traffic is now routed through the city tunnel in rare cases, especially on the edge of the day, construction sites or short-term diversions.

line Train run since December 2019 Cycle (min)
S 1 Leipzig Miltitzer Allee - Leipzig Hbf - Leipzig-Stötteritz 30th
S 2 Lutherstadt Wittenberg / Dessau  - Bitterfeld - Delitzsch unt Bf - Leipzig Messe - Leipzig Hbf - Leipzig-Stötteritz 30th
S 3 Halle-Trotha - Halle  - Schkeuditz - Leipzig Hbf - Leipzig-Stötteritz - Wurzen (- Oschatz) 30th
S 4 Hoyerswerda - Falkenberg  - Torgau - Eilenburg  - Taucha - Leipzig Hbf - Leipzig-Connewitz - Markkleeberg-Gaschwitz 30th
S 5 Halle  - Leipzig / Halle Airport - Leipzig Trade Fair - Leipzig Hbf - Markkleeberg - Altenburg  - Crimmitschau - Werdau - Zwickau 60
S 5X Halle  - Leipzig / Halle Airport - Leipzig Trade Fair - Leipzig Hbf - Markkleeberg - Altenburg - Crimmitschau - Werdau - Zwickau 60
S 6 Leipzig Messe - Leipzig Hbf - Borna - Geithain 30th

The cycle times relate to the core lines; the cycle times are thinned out on the outer lines. Between Borna and Geithain there is an hourly service and behind Torgau there is a two-hour service that is condensed by RE trains. Also north of Bitterfeld there is only an hourly service. Due to construction work in the entire region, the routes have had to be changed annually since 2015, so regular routes have not yet been established.

See also


  • Deutsche Bahn AG (Hrsg.): City-Tunnel Leipzig - Chronicle of a railway connection from the 19th to the 21st century . Strom & Strom, Leipzig 2004, ISBN 3-9807618-4-3 .
  • Working group site management / site supervision City-Tunnel Leipzig (Ed.): City-Tunnel Leipzig - Chronicle of the development of a Saxon traffic project . Strom & Strom, Leipzig 2009, ISBN 978-3-939516-07-1 .
  • Horst Fechner: City-Tunnel Leipzig - From the drawing board to implementation . In: The Railway Engineer . No. 7 . Eurailpress Tetzlaff-Hestra, 2005, ISSN  0013-2810 , p. 5-12 .
  • DB ProjektBau GmbH (Ed.): Infrastructure projects 2010. Construction at Deutsche Bahn . Eurailpress-Verlag, Hamburg 2010, ISBN 978-3-7771-0414-0 , p. 132-146 .
  • Peter Bock: The City Tunnel Leipzig . In: Verkehrsgeschichtliche Blätter . 41st volume, 1 (January / February), 2014, p. 20-23 .

Web links

Commons : City-Tunnel Leipzig  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

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This version was added to the list of articles worth reading on November 23, 2013 .