Berliner Hauptbahnhof - Germany
Tilting office bridges at Berlin`s new Main Railway Station

Scope of works performed

Tilting of office bridges at Berlin`s new Main Railway Station


DB Station and Service AG, Berlin


von Gerkan, Marg und Partner, Hamburg

Engineering Consultant

Schlaich, Bergermann und Partner, Stuttgart


Donges Stahlbau GmbH, Darmstadt

Strand Jacking Operations

VSL Heavy Lifting Switzerland



Project Description

In July and August 2005,  a very important step in the construction of Berlin`s new Main Railway Station was accomplished - the steel skeletons of 2 office bridges were tilted from there vertical erection position to the final horizontal level.  The bridges will accommodate 4 levels of offices. They span 87m over the glass roof that covers railway lines and platforms. The owner imposed that assembly work could not be done over ongoing rail traffic. This limited the possible work over the rails and trains to a few night hours per day.

The Main Contractor opted for assembling each bridge in 2 halves in vertical position on top of the 4 office towers adjacent to the station area. The four bridges halves had then to be tilted to horizontal position. VSL was contacted at an early design stage to advise  how to rotate such structures from their vertical position through a phase of unstable eqiulibrium to the horizontal.

VSL’s concept consisted in tilting each bridge half from the vertical erection position to the balance by firstly lifting with 4 strand units. Two groups of 4 strand lowering units were then necessary to retain the 1.250t structures between the balance and the horizontal. The positions around the balance were delicate, because somewhere within this sector the required lifting and retaining forces were zero.

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