One of Germany‘s largest construction sites
Superlatives are the only words to use when describing this construction site, where four thousand engineers and workers are building two train stations and many miles of tunnels in a decade-long development project. In late 2010, the former head of the German national railway Deutsche Bahn and representatives of the region broke ground together to announce the official launch of ”Stuttgart 21” construction. Since then, ditches have been dug, tunnels bored, and shell construction built. Up to 4,000 people work daily at the giant site. The current cost estimate for the main train station and newly constructed railway line to Ulm is 6.1 billion euros. The twenty tunnels between Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen and Ulm cover a total of about 58 kilometres (36 miles). The project requires some ten million cubic metres (about 353 million cubic feet) of stone and dirt to be dug out and transported away. The ”European Quarter”, as the site around the future main train station will be called, is one of the most eminent city centre initiatives in Germany. The new main train station is the heart of the European Quarter development, with Moskauer Strasse forming the central axis in the new part of the city.
All the other streets and squares will be pedestrian zones. At the middle of the European Quarter will be Mailänder Platz, whose water displays and deciduous trees will create a lively urban oasis. The square should be completed by late autumn of 2014. The centre of the new urban cultural hub is the library, which won the ”Library of the Year” award on its recent second birthday. This prize is bestowed by the German Library Association and the ZEIT Foundation, and is the only national library award in Germany.