Rhomberg Sersa Rail Group remains on board as execution partner

Rhomberg Sersa Rail Group remains on board as execution partner

New Cottbus facility: Groundbreaking for second hall of largest and most modern ICE maintenance facility.

By 2026, the Deutsche Bahn maintenance facility will be complete. • "Rail partnership model" has proven successful

Cottbus/Bregenz, March 5, 2024 – The first construction measures for the second hall of the Deutsche Bahn (DB) ICE maintenance facility in Cottbus have begun. Brandenburg's Minister President Dr. Dietmar Woidke and Dr. Daniela Gerd tom Markotten, Member of the Board for Digitalization and Technology at DB, together performed the symbolic groundbreaking. Also present on site was the Rhomberg Sersa Rail Group, jointly responsible with partners for the transportation systems, civil engineering, railway equipment, and medium-voltage supply.

With the over 500-meter-long, four-track hall, the most modern and largest DB maintenance facility is being completed. In January, the DB put the first, two-track workshop hall in Cottbus into operation less than 20 months after the groundbreaking. The earthworks for the second construction project also began in January, and by 2026, the four-track maintenance hall plus paint shop in Cottbus is scheduled to be operational. Then, in the most modern DB facility, full capacity for the heavy maintenance of the entire ICE 4 fleet will be available just four years after construction began. 

The ICE 4 is the backbone of DB long-distance traffic, with the corporation having ordered 137 of these trains; a total of around 450 ICE trains of different series are expected to be on the tracks by the end of the decade. More trains also require more maintenance capacity. With innovative technology, the new facility in Cottbus ensures that trains quickly return to service. This enables more people to travel in an environmentally friendly and comfortable manner—a win for the transportation transition in Germany. 

Dr. Daniela Gerd tom Markotten, DB Board Member for Digitalization and Technology: "After being able to kick off the heavy maintenance of our ICE 4 fleet in Cottbus in January, we are now starting construction of the second workshop hall. Once again, we are relying on close cooperation with construction companies and authorities in the 'rail partnership model,' the exchange in the task force, and local craftsmen. With this successful model, by 2026, we will not only build the most modern but also the largest ICE maintenance facility for the DB. This makes an important contribution to the Lausitz region, the people in the area, and to a strong rail system in Germany."

Dr. Dietmar Woidke, Minister President of Brandenburg: "The new ICE facility is currently the most important project in the Lausitz structural change. Construction is happening at Brandenburg pace. I thank all those involved for this outstanding achievement. Everything is falling perfectly into place here. The most modern railway workshop in Europe is setting standards. Its enormous significance also lies in the fact that 1,200 new industrial jobs and training positions are being created here, thus compensating for the loss of lignite jobs. The Deutsche Bahn is securing these jobs with an attractive collective agreement. In addition, there is a great commitment from the railway in training. In parallel, we are ensuring a livable Lausitz region through infrastructure expansion such as the Lübbenau-Cottbus railway line."

The new workshop hall will be over 500 meters long and approximately 200 meters wide. From 2026, ICE trains can enter for maintenance on four tracks at full length. Thanks to innovative technologies such as augmented reality glasses, apps for material management, and electrically driven material trains, trains in Cottbus can be maintained much faster than in other facilities, where they would need to be divided and laboriously rearranged for inspection. This ensures that trains are quickly and reliably available for passengers in Germany, Austria, or Switzerland.

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