Untersteinach: here comes the bypass

Untersteinach: here comes the bypass

Dust, stones and "soft blasts: it’s like a quarry between ludwigschorgast and untersteinach. Heavy trucks rumble down the runway and kick up clouds of dust. The air is full of little kafer that buzz around you.
The view from the wall, which will later enclose the bypass, reaches far and gives an idea of the size of the construction site. The untersteinach bypass is a mega-project: 60 million euros in costs, several years of construction time. Only at the end of 2020, the traffic there should stay.
Project manager fritz baumgartel from the bayreuth state construction office and project engineer alexander siller took a tour of the construction site that began two years ago. "We are on time and on budget, says baumgartel. Everything is going according to plan. So far, the workers have been spared any nasty surprises or accidents. Over 50 men are sometimes on duty at the same time.
On another level, a few meters higher, holes are drilled in the ground. For explosive charges. The "soft" blasting is necessary to loosen the subsoil. "Otherwise the excavator won’t make it", explains baumgartel. A total of 630,000 cubic meters of earth will be moved and 17,000 tons of asphalt mix placed.
A rough topic is the protection from the alarm of the vehicles that pass daily the B 289. Around 14,000 on the old line (as of 2015). A rough part of the bypass runs in a land cut that forms a natural barrier against larvae. The coarse bridge will be provided with a larmschutz, which runs up to the gelande incision. There are no gaps through which the emissions can penetrate, stresses the expert from the tram construction office.
The geology along the route is particularly interesting for the trenchers. Because at the height of the arch bridge, which will later carry the road from untersteinach to see over the bypass, there is a transition from keuper (a soft rock layer) to shell limestone, which is very hard. "Two completely different types of stone", which require a completely different approach, especially when it comes to raising the booms.
Even if you can’t imagine it now: everything around the bypass will be green again later on. "It takes five years for everything to grow in", emphasizes the project manager.
Three storm water overflow basins are built. They are constructed in such a way that in the front area wastewater is separated from so-called light liquids such as oil and diesel as well as suspended matter.
The construction of these basins has been preserved: "it’s been built this way for 30, 40 years", says baumgartel at the end of our tour of one of the roughest construction sites in the region.

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