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Maschsee june 2015.jpg
The Maschsee with Ricklinger gravel ponds in the foreground
Geographical location Hanover , Lower Saxony
Places on the shore Hanover
Coordinates 52 ° 21 '16 "  N , 9 ° 44' 35"  E Coordinates: 52 ° 21 '16 "  N , 9 ° 44' 35"  E
Maschsee (Lower Saxony)
Altitude above sea level 53.2  m
surface approx. 0.8 km²dep1
length 2.4 kmdep1
width 180-530 mdep1
volume 1.6 million m³dep1
scope approx. 6 kmdep1
Middle deep approx. 2 m


artificially created

Template: Infobox Lake / Maintenance / EVIDENCE AREA Template: Infobox Lake / Maintenance / EVIDENCE LAKE WIDTH Template: Infobox Lake / Maintenance / EVIDENCE VOLUME Template: Infobox Lake / Maintenance / EVIDENCE SCOPE Template: Infobox Lake / Maintenance / EVIDENCE MED -DEPTH
View to the northeast over the frozen lake to the New Town Hall . On the right is the Nord / LB administration building .

The Maschsee is an artificially created 2.4 km long and 180 to 530 m wide lake south of the city center of Hanover . With an area of ​​78  hectares , it is the largest body of water in the Lower Saxony state capital. The lake allows numerous water sports and is a popular local recreation area .



The name of the lake is derived from the "Leinemasch" or simply "Masch". This is the historical field name for the area in which the lake was created. It is a lower floodplain of the Leine . The origin of the term Masch is related to the marsh landscape type .

Hydraulic engineering reasons

Creating a lake in the wide river valley of the Leine near Hanover was already being considered in the late 19th century. This offered itself in connection with the need to dike the Leine and Ihme , which regularly led to spring floods in the city after the snowmelt in the Harz Mountains . In addition, the flooded areas made it possible to use leisure time even then: if they froze over in winter, the Masch was used as an ice rink. The connection with the Leine and Ihme regulation was decisive for the realization of the lake project. This reduced the risk of flooding and made better use of the Leinetal. Over the decades there have been several, very different designs: small solutions and large ones that envisaged the Schützenplatz as an island in the lake. In September 1925, the newly elected Lord Mayor Arthur Quantity commissioned the hydraulic engineer and professor at the Technical University of Hanover, Otto Franzius , to work out a project for the construction of a Maschsee together with the city building authority. Franzius was responsible for the hydraulic engineering and water management part, the city planning office under the direction of Karl Elkart for the urban planning. In January 1926, the city's magistrate granted 14,000  Reichsmarks for attempts to seal. These were necessary because the project first brought up the idea not to dig the lake into the machine and to feed from the flowing line . Rather, the Maschsee should be built like a bowl on the Masch and thus above the level of the Leine and fed by a pumping station. This also solved the problem of the threat of silting up from suspended matter carried along in the river water. With this, Otto Franzius ultimately created the design that turned out to be viable and affordable.

Nevertheless, it took around eight years before three strong reasons spoke for the creation of an artificial lake in the Leinemasch at the beginning of the 1930s and work began:

  • Containment of the flood bed of the Ihme
  • Creation of a local recreation area close to the city with opportunities for water sports enthusiasts
  • Elimination of high unemployment (58,000 Hanoverians were unemployed in 1932) through a public job creation program

The 20 m high Bismarckian column in the middle of the future water surface, completed in 1904, spoke against the construction of the lake at this point . Paramilitary marches took place there and in 1933 the book burning in Hanover took place. The column was completely demolished in 1935 during the construction work for the Maschsee.

Job creation measure

In the 1930s, at the time of the global economic crisis , the city of Hanover did not have sufficient financial resources to implement the Maschsee project. The creation of the lake had already been specifically planned 10 years earlier. For the NSDAP , the lake project came in handy to reduce the number of unemployed. She had literally taken it upon herself and made it the subject of her propaganda during marches, among other things. On November 28, 1933, it was on the agenda of a city council meeting. On March 21, 1934, the groundbreaking ceremony for the Maschsee took place in the Leinemasch. Despite the lack of funding, many people found work at the lake. In doing so, they accepted poor working conditions and low wages that were not much higher than their unemployment benefit rates. The workers had to bring their own tools. 14 locomotives with 365 tipping lifts on around 15 km of track systems as well as excavators and 5 crawler tractors were used on technical equipment  . Initially 100 workers were involved, in the end 1,650 workers. They dug around 780,000 m³ of soil for the lake basin.

In the spring of 1936 the Maschsee project was completed. The inauguration took place on Ascension Day , May 21, 1936. Hundreds of thousands of Hanoverians and guests followed a colorful program around the lake. The event began with a typical mass parade of the NSDAP. In addition, 6,000 athletes took part in a star march as well as delegations from authorities and the Wehrmacht . During the Second World War , the lake was covered with tarpaulins and artificial landscape replicas on swimming islands in order to make it difficult for the Allied bomber pilots to orientate themselves during the air raids on Hanover .

Water balance

Through seepage and evaporation , the water level falls by a maximum of 1.3 cm a day, representing an amount of 10,000  cubic meters corresponds to water. In order to keep the water level constant, a pumping station on the Ricklinger gravel ponds ensures the water balance of the Maschsee . It has three pumps with a total capacity of 1000 l / s. From there, a pipe over 800 meters long leads the water into the lake near the “Maschseequelle”. Depending on the weather, one to two million m³ of water must be replenished every year. From November to February there is no pumping; during this time the water level drops by an average of 45 cm.

Maschsee spring

Main article see Maschseequelle

Maschsee spring with empty water basin

Until 1960, water was supplied to the Maschsee from the “Maschseequelle” pumping station, as the water level sinks through evaporation in summer. The pump and filter house was one of the first structures on the lake to go into operation in November 1935. The plant has two pumps that can lift 500 liters of water per second from the Leine river, which is only a few meters away. Since the Leine water is heavily polluted by suspended matter , the lake began to silt up faster than originally assumed. Therefore, the city administration of Hanover decided in 1960 to build a new pumping station on the Ricklinger Kiesteiche in order to supply the Maschsee with groundwater from there . The old pump house is only active when the oxygen content in the water is too low, as the water there is fed into the lake via a three-stage open cascade . During the Maschsee Festival , the old pumping station with its cascade is also put into operation from time to time.

Today the old pump house is used by the Sport Club Hannover e. V. used as a club house and boathouse .

Leisure business

For pedestrians, the Maschsee, which is relatively close to the city center, is a welcome local recreation area. Once a year in summer, the Maschsee Festival takes place around the lake, which lasts several weeks and now attracts around two million visitors a year. Offer this cabaret , gastronomy , music performances and fireworks .

Boats and ships

Passenger ship, here dressed up as a pirate ship
Üstralala during the Maschsee Festival

During the summer, the Hanoverian transport companies lead üstra on the lake Fahrgastschifffahrt through with electrically powered vehicles. One of the boats is powered by solar energy . The anchorage at the breakpoints is done by electromagnets instead of the usual ropes. Gastronomy is operated on the bank . Around the Maschsee there are numerous clubs for water sports (especially rowing and sailing ). In the course of the year, various competitions take place on the water, especially the annual Dragon Boat Festival Hanover .

Sailing boats can be hired from two sailing clubs, which also offer courses for obtaining a sailing license.

Motorboat races were regularly held on the lake from 1952 to 1990 . During this time, a world championship title was awarded four times, five races were part of the world championship series in the 2-liter class and a European champion was crowned ten times.

To prevent damage to the waterproofing, anchoring is not permitted anywhere on the lake.

to bathe

The Maschsee lido is located in the south of the lake . The former municipal outdoor pool was handed over by the city to a private investor (Strandbad Maschsee GmbH) in 2005. Construction work began on an extensive commercial wellness park, but this project stalled. In 2007 it was taken over by the Aspria investor group, which continued work. In spring 2009 "Aspria Hannover GmbH" opened a private spa and sports club on the property in the buildings of the old lido and some new extensions . The operation of the public lido was also handed over to Aspria GmbH. Since the bathing season 2009, more than half of the area of ​​the lido has only been available to members of the Aspria Club.

Running and inline skating

The circuit around the Maschsee is a popular running route with joggers . In 2005, a 6.0 km long route around the Maschsee was measured using the Jones Counter by the German Athletics Association on behalf of the City of Hanover . This route runs on the unpaved footpath, i.e. closer to the water than the paved bike path. In order to avoid walking over steps, the route runs along the wide footpath at the lion bastion and on the bike path at the pump house. In June 2007 the route was marked with so-called milestones every 500 m.

The cycle path around the Maschsee has been officially approved for inline skating since May 2003 .

On traditional Maschsee run annually take several thousand runners from Hanover schools and sports clubs participate.

Ice skating

Pedestrians and ice hockey players on the lake, January 2009

If the ice thickness of the lake exceeds 13 cm in winter, the city administration officially releases the lake for entry by hoisting the city flag on the north bank. When the weather is stable, a gastronomic and cultural offer is organized on the edge of the lake as an ice party . During this time, the lake is visited by several 10,000 visitors a day, among other things for ice skating and ice hockey games. Most recently, the lake was opened for entry in 2003, 2006, 2009 and 2012. From 20 cm of ice thickness, stalls can also be set up on the lake, the last time it was in 2003.


The Maschsee can be reached with the bus ring line 100/200 (stops at the Sprengel Museum and the HDI-Arena ). During the Maschsee Festival, the event bus line 267 connects the Kröpcke and Aegidientorplatz underground stations with stops on the eastern shore of the Maschsee and ends at the lido. Numerous footpaths and bike paths lead to the lake and along its banks. On the north and east side there are highways with numerous parking lots. The west side of the lake, on which there are water sports clubs with their boathouses, can only be reached on foot or by bicycle, as the access roads for motor vehicles are only released for residents. In the middle of the west side, however, there is a freely accessible, larger parking lot in the immediate vicinity of the lake: the parking lot of the Olympic base at the Parrot Bridge .

Art on the lake

On the northern edge of the lake are the six meter high red steel halberdier by Alexander Calder (1972) and the bronze sculpture of the Olympic torchbearer ( torchbearer column ) on an 18.5 meter high stone column and putto on the fish , both by Hermann Scheuertstuhl (1936 ). Further sculptures on the east bank are the human couple by Georg Kolbe (1936/37) and two lions created by Arno Breker (1938) - sculptures on the lion bastion . In 1948 came out with the float of Erich Haberland another sculpture to. The inscription on the pillar of the torchbearer reads: “The will to set up gave happy hands the blessing of work - from now on the lake will also give joy, health and strength. 1934–1936. "

The sculptures from the time of National Socialism led to discussions as to whether it was about art or National Socialist propaganda, as they reflect the image of people and society from that time with a special emphasis on strength and health. Since 2012, there have been two information boards on the north bank of the Maschsee opposite the Sprengel Museum , which deal critically with the art of the Maschsee.

In 2005, an installation by the Spanish artist Santiago Sierra in the Kestnergesellschaft was a reminder of the creation of the lake through job creation measures by filling a walk-in room with mud.

New light on the lake

A light art project around the Maschsee took place at the beginning of 2009 under the term Neulicht am See . 22 objects were set up for several weeks. The art objects had been designed by international artists, and most of them were lit up at night. They marked the beginning of the garden project garden region 2009 of the Hanover region .


Several thousand carp are bred in the Maschsee, some of which are sold to the public every year at Christmas and New Year's Eve if ordered in advance. Fish farming and sales are currently (2019) carried out by Fischhus Niemann.

Laser show on the Day of German Unity , on the right Marktkirche and New Town Hall

At the edge of the Maschsee or in the immediate vicinity are the Maschpark with the Maschteich and the New Town Hall , the International School Hannover Region , the Schützenplatz , the Lower Saxony State Museum , the Sprengel Museum , the state broadcasting houses of NDR and ZDF , the HDI-Arena , the Aspria Wellness Park in Hanover, the Lower Saxony-Bremen regional directorate of the Federal Employment Agency and the stadium pool . On the north bank is the Courtyard by Marriott hotel , which was built in the late 1990s after the Hannover casino was rebuilt. Furthermore, with the high schools Bismarckschule and Tellkampfschule and the free Waldorf school, there are three large schools with a total of over 3000 students directly on the east bank of the Maschsee.


See also

Web links

Commons : Maschsee  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ↑ Information board on the city history of Hanover
  2. Maschsee . Year 1936 in the online exhibition 100 Years of Landscape Architecture . Retrieved April 9, 2014.
  3. ^ Municipal press office Hanover (ed.): Hanover's Maschsee. At its opening on May 21, 1936 , Hannover 1936, p. 19
  4. The Maschsee. State capital Hanover, archived from the original on May 21, 2009 ; accessed on November 27, 2015 (p. 7).
  5. Waldemar R. Röhrbein : Maschsee in Stadtlexikon Hannover , p. 430 ff.
  6. ^ Karl-Heinz Grotjahn: Maschseelauf. In: Stadtlexikon Hannover , p. 432
  7. FAZ. Retrieved March 29, 2013.