Dang. Not yet a quarter into it, and this year is flying by already. After our inconvenient-but-still-lovely Mallorcan long weekend last year, we returned to Regensburg to get to work on our new digs. We’ve learned a lot about wiring and installing ceiling lamps, and options for furniture, and some life lessons about paint contractors.1
Yesterday we were excited to see that the scaffolding and tarps obscuring the south end of the bridge are coming down!
Bayerischer Rundfunk is reporting that the third phase of the project (arches #3-5) is nearing completion. Arches #6-9 are up next, and the auxiliary pedestrian bridge that’s been standing around with no way for anyone to use it will be connected to the main bridge to divert Fußgänger and Fahrradfahrer traffic again soon.
Is it really February? It feels more like April, or maybe even March.
A few (more large) pieces of the auxiliary bridge disappeared recently overnight, revealing even more of a “bridge to nowhere” scene. Sure would be nice to get some more progress in place here. As it stands now, it seems like the biggest part of the project — the middle — is going to be in progress right when the weather warms up and all those Bavarian holidays kick in, with tourists from all over Germany (and the rest of the world, really) swarming the bridge and clogging the already-narrowed auxiliary sections.
Widened gap between auxiliary bridge sections:
Mucky bank at Trattoria Marina due to dropping water levels:
Note the outdoor lunchers soaking up every bit of sunlight they can. Sure can’t blame them for missing the sun. Who knows when it’ll return?
Green-but-swampy bank and lonely auxiliary bridge tower:
Our last post was about Fall Splendor. There was not a lot to report on in November or December. The usual Christmas Market stuff came and went — much the same as always. One nice change: my team members from Romania came to visit in Regensburg and they got a taste of the Christmas markets for once. In the past, we’ve had end-of-the-year workshops in November, before there is any reason at all to spend time together outside of the office. At least with the Christmas markets, there is Glühwein and fair food, and the hope for snowy conditions.
In bridge news, this past week the north end of the bridge was closed overnight one night while some huge trucks lined up on our island to remove some no-longer-needed pieces of the auxiliary bridge. Today I went out to see the differences…
…and could not ascertain any at all. It’s unclear whether the trucks cleared out bridge detritus that had always been invisible, or maybe something went schief and the event had to be scrapped. Either way: no visible progress since there were leaves on the trees.
But in the meantime, what with Easter’s early arrival this year, Fasching preparations are underway. Coming up: watch out for mustard in your Krapfen and remember to wear an ugly tie1 the crazy ladies at work can snip up on Weiberfasching.2 Maybe snap up one of these masks to protect your identity if you plan on getting kooky.
A couple weeks ago, a story appeared in the local newspaper to explain what was up with the construction equipment blocking pedestrian access to St. Peter’s Cathedral at the heart of downtown Regensburg.
Turns out they discovered hairline cracks in the masonry rather high up. The cathedral is one of the biggest draws to the town, and an iconic symbol of Regensburg. There’s no way they could block off access to the area — not with the hordes of river cruise and bus tourists from around the world. But they also could not afford to risk a piece of masonry falling on anyone. Result: a pedestrian shield set up around the falling rock stone zone.
Regarding the bridge work: there’s nothing new to report, at least as far as we laypeople can see. The south end (the city side) is still closed off, and the auxiliary bridge is still up on the north end (Stadtamhof side). I can’t fathom why they left the auxiliary bridge up still on this end. Its purpose has been served. Its ugliness is universally accepted. Tear it down! I like standing at the north end of Stadtamhof and looking all the way down the street, across the bridge, and over to the Dom spires. But it still feels weird for bike traffic to come zooming down the main bridge again onto “our” street after 5 years of that not being an option.
After a long, hot, dry summer, we finally got a few hours of rain at the end of August.
From what we’ve seen in local media, tomorrow is the official opening of “our” half of the bridge. Since about a week now, pedestrians on weekends have taken to simply moving the barricades aside and walking about where they please on areas of the bridge that are obviously complete.
Spring is here, officially, and surprise! It’s still dang cold out there! The clear skies and bright sunny days are just a clever ruse. 1 I took a few pictures of the bridge and surroundings when the weather permitted it. Continue reading Bridge Report, Easter 2015
It even snowed today briefly in the bright sun behind a threatening rain cloud. [↩]