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Columbuskaje (Bremerhaven 1)
Location of the Columbuskaje in Bremerhaven with the Bremen port area

The Columbuskaje is a ship mooring at the mouth of the Weser in the northwest of the city of Bremerhaven . The facilities are located in the Bremen port area and are now used as a cruise terminal under the name Columbus Cruise Center Bremerhaven (CCCB). In 2016 there were 68 calls by cruise ships and 96,500  passengers were handled. In 2017, over 165,000 passengers were handled with 84 calls. In 2019, 246,995 passengers were counted on 130 calls.


Entrance to the cruise terminal (Columbus Cruise Center)


Europe and Bremen at the Columbuskaje (1930)
Port of Embarkation - American troop transport at Columbuskaje (1957)

The Columbuskaje and the Columbusbahnhof as a train station by the sea were built in the 1920s under the direction of senior construction director Heinrich Tillmann and completed in 1927. It got its name after the passenger ship Columbus , the flagship of North German Lloyd , which has called at Bremerhaven since 1924, but had no attractive berth here. With the reference to Christopher Columbus , a connection to the New World should also be signaled. In 1927 the quay was around 1,000 meters long.

When the quay was built, an area was floated between the outer dike and the later quay, on which the Columbus station was built. This seaside station has a rail link to the hinterland. From Bremerhaven main station , tracks lead to Columbusbahnhof. The American line ended at this pier .

The quay is best known as the most important berth for steamers in transatlantic traffic to the United States . A large part of the flow of emigrants from Europe, especially from Germany and East-Central Europe to overseas ( America and Australia ) ran through the Columbuskaje and the neighboring new Lloydhalle and until 1897 through the old Lloydhalle at the New Harbor . In the 1930s, the world-famous ships with the Blue Ribbon such as the Bremen or Europa of the North German Lloyd or in the 1950s the United States and America of the United States Lines docked here .

The passenger facilities destroyed in the air raids on Bremerhaven were gradually rebuilt in Germany in the post-war period after the Second World War . In 1950, the wooden reception and waiting hall in the southern area could be operated again and by 1952 the southern passenger facility and the train station were completed. The North German Lloyd launched in 1954 with the Gripsholm , in 1955 Berlin renamed again its passenger service on the North Atlantic .

From February to April 1948, US cargo ships landed here 23,000 boxes with “doorknobs”, according to the box label “Barcelona via Bremerhaven”. However, it was a matter of the top secret Operation Bird Dog , in reality the boxes contained 1,100 tons of banknotes, the Deutsche Mark , the new money for the three western zones.

At Columbuskaje Elvis Presley entered German soil in 1958 as GI , cheered by thousands of young fans. This is reminiscent of a bronze plaque embedded in the floor at the 700 meter mark, which has not been directly accessible since 2004.

From May 1966 to December 1982 there was a regular ferry connection with the England ferry to Harwich .


Transfer to New York (1932)

In the middle of the quay, the new passenger facility II with the station was built from 1958 to 1962. The high-rise office building was only built with the lower floors. Soon afterwards, however, liner shipping declined rapidly. The quay was increasingly used by cargo ships. The area of ​​the southern passenger facility was demolished and a warehouse was built.

Today the middle and northern part of the Columbuskaje is used by cruise ships - especially in the summer months - and the southern end for cargo handling . In the area of ​​passenger traffic, over 75,000 passengers traveled from Columbuskaje in 2006, five years later the figure was only around 52,000. The regular SPNV service at Columbusbahnhof ended on April 7, 1993, as shipping traffic increasingly headed for the Seebäderkaje in the center of Bremerhaven, which can be reached much more quickly from the main train station by bus or car. In addition, the Columbusbahnhof can only be reached via a secondary railway line through the port area and is therefore not served by the scheduled trains on the Bremerhaven – Cuxhaven railway line .

Due to old age, the quay is to be renovated by 2018 by placing a new sheet pile wall in front of the old one. To continue using the so-called "Columbus Island" was for the port operator bremenports a report created. This suggests the demolition of the old train station and the construction of new facilities for the handling of larger cruise ships, which can have sufficient draft in a couchette , an office building and a "maritime theme hotel" as well as a small museum for further revitalization.

See also


  • Arno Hartog: Bremerhaven's gateway to the world. 80 years of Columbuskaje Bremerhaven . Edition Temmen, Bremerhaven 2008, ISBN 978-3-86108-590-4 .
  • Harald Focke: Columbusbahnhof II - built past the need. The expanded passenger facility in Bremerhaven was put into service 50 years ago . In: Niederdeutsches Heimatblatt No. 754, October 2012, p. 3/4 ( online version , PDF; 3.4 MB)
  • Harald Focke: The biggest pile of rubble after the war. 40 years ago the Columbusbahnhof from 1952 was demolished - Bremerhaven lost a landmark . In: Niederdeutsches Heimatblatt No. 778, October 2014, p. 1.
  • Harald Focke , Dirk J. Peters: The Columbuskaje in Bremerhaven . Sutton Verlag , Erfurt 2015, ISBN 978-3-95400-550-5 .

Web links

Commons : Columbus Cruise Center  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Coordinates: 53 ° 33 ′ 36.5 ″  N , 8 ° 33 ′ 10.4 ″  E

Individual evidence

  1. Peter Kleinort: “Saga Sapphire” ends season at CCCB · Converted “Europe” has long been a guest on the Weser · For 2017, well over 95,000 passengers expected. In: Daily port report , December 20, 2016, p. 15
  2. Peter Kleinort: CCCB wants to significantly outperform last year · Shipping companies satisfied with services in Bremerhaven · Senate invests in Columbus Quay . In: Daily port report of March 13, 2018, p. 4
  3. Florian Schwiegershausen: New passenger record in Bremerhaven . In: Weser-Kurier from January 3, 2018
  4. Hafenspiegel 2019 Bremenports, April 6, 2020, accessed on April 23, 2020
  5. Track layout on the map of bremen ports, as of November 25, 2017
  6. 60 years of currency reform. In: FAZ , June 20, 2008
  7. Elvis Presley in Bremerhaven ( Memento from November 5, 2014 in the web archive )
  8. Ferry to Harwich for the last time tomorrow . Nordsee-Zeitung from December 14, 1982
  9. ^ Report in the Sunday Journal of August 19, 2012
  10. Columbusbahnhof is to be demolished. Expert opinion for bremenports presents various development opportunities. In: Daily port report , July 4, 2014, p. 4