A new era for local transit in Leipzig

Posted: 3 March 2014 | Ronald Juhrs, Technology & Operations, Leipziger Verkehrsbetriebe (LVB) | No comments yet

Leipzig’s trams have been repaired at the Heiterblick workshop since 1925 and of course, during that time the technology used in the vehicles has changed completely. Therefore, it was high time for the garage to be updated, and after two years of construction, the 100m-long LVB maintenance centre now stands at the heart of the Heiterblick site.

The new tram workshop for LVB is clad in wood with glass walls to the front and back

The new tram workshop for LVB is clad in wood with glass walls to the front and back

With its wooden exterior and glass walls to the front and back elevations, the new workshop looks very high-tech. “This is truly the start of a new era,” said LVB’s Managing Director Ulf Middelberg proudly on a visit to the site.

From track layout to architecture, the new workshop, at the centre of a site the size of 60 football fields, is set-up for maximum process efficiency. However, it is also important to keep working conditions in mind and the workplace also doubles as a living space, and that is why plenty of natural light streams into the large space.

The new main workshop is laid out for minimum maintenance distances. In the past an NGT-8 tram had to be moved backwards and forwards 8.7 kilometres during the course of a major inspection. In the new workshop, that distance has been halved to 4.3 kilometres.

Work takes place simultaneously on three levels. While work on the inner workings of the tram is carried out in ‘the cellar’ on platforms and on the ground floor, work on the roof attachments can be made on the first floor. The maintenance track is rounded-out by a straitening unit and a 45m-long paint shop.

When the main workshop goes into operation at the end of the first stage of the technical centre development project in March 2014, but it won’t mean that all the workers, their tools and machines will move at once; the move will take place in a number of phases, and the official opening of the main workshop will be held in May 2014.


Ronald Juhrs, a qualified transport engineer and worked at Leipziger Verkehrsbetriebe since 1978 and is currently the Managing Director of Technology and Operations.

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