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A8 Enztal crossing - Lot 5 wildlife crossing, Pforzheim

Facts and Figures
Company PORR GmbH & Co. KGaA
Principal Autobahn GmbH des Bundes, Southwest branch
Location Pforzheim - Germany
Type Bridge construction
Runtime 05.2022 - 08.2025

A wildlife crossing to safeguard biodiversity in the Northern Black Forest

By the end of 2026, around 4.8km of the heavily congested section of the A8 motorway between the Pforzheim-North and Pforzheim-Süd junctions will be widened to six lanes. The new motorway will benefit both humans and wildlife. Noise protection walls and numerous other measures have been planned to safeguard biodiversity and protect the environment. The Munich office of PORR Ingenieurbau was awarded the contract for lot 5, the construction of a new 64m long wildlife bridge at Hagenschiess near Niefern.  

The city of Pforzheim, along with the upper Enz valley, is located in the Central/North Black Forest Nature Reserve, which plays an essential role in protecting valuable habitats for many endangered species of flora and fauna. At the same time, the region is connected to an international transport network via the A8 motorway. The wildlife bridge is being built to meet the needs of local wildlife and to help safeguard biodiversity. Most people drive beneath the grassy overpasses without paying much attention, but they fulfil two essential tasks:

they reduce the risk of collisions between vehicles and animals, while also serving to reconnect habitats that have been disrupted by roads and built-up areas. Deer, wild boar and lynx roam many kilometres every day and need a correspondingly large amount of space. But these bridge structures are also used by smaller animals. 

Integral arch bridge to be built in two sections 

The Hagenschiess wildlife crossing is designed as an integral arch bridge and is built on transom foundations. It will be fitted with highly absorptive screens to shield the animals crossing the road from traffic noise and glare. Since the expansion of the motorway to six lanes is being carried out at the same time, the civil engineering team has to adapt to the traffic phases of the main construction project, the Enztal crossing. This means that each half of the solid arch is erected on either side and supported in the middle. The wildlife bridge is expected to be completed by autumn 2025 due to a prolonged hiatus after the construction of the first semi-arch.