Small and green: Deutsche Bahn opens first railway station made of wooden modules in Zorneding

Focus on sustainability: wood from the region, battery storage, heat pump, photovoltaics – blueprint for many other stations – second station made of wood also on the Munich S-Bahn network in Haar to follow in record time

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Munich, 18 December 2023

Deutsche Bahn (DB) is celebrating the opening of the first station reception building made entirely of wood in Zorneding (Bavaria) today. Bernd Koch, CEO of DB Station&Service AG, inaugurated the 200 square metre, modern and light-flooded building in the presence of representatives from the federal government, the Free State of Bavaria and the municipality. DB invested around 2.2 million euros in the station together with the BMDV, the state of Bavaria and the municipality.

Sustainability is clearly at the centre of the construction, technical equipment and interior design. The timber for the building comes from the region and the individual construction elements were manufactured in a traditional timber construction company in Regensburg. The innovative feature: the modules are standardised so that – as with a prefabricated house – many different floor plans, sizes and designs are possible on the same construction basis. This means that many more small green stations can be built in the coming decades, providing individual, fast and environmentally friendly access to climate-friendly travel.

Bhf Zorneding – Rendering

The waiting area invites passengers to linger with modern seating and charging facilities for mobile phones. In future, passengers will be able to purchase travel necessities, baked goods and snacks in a DB ServiceStore with outdoor seating on the forecourt, which has been redesigned by the local authority. An additional 200 bicycle parking spaces will be created there and a new bicycle ramp will improve access. Public, barrier-free toilet facilities and ticket machines round off the offer.

Bernd Koch, CEO of DB Station&Service AG: “Our aim is to build sustainable station buildings for cities, communities and our travellers in a short space of time. Zorneding is the debut for a whole series of other small green railway stations. Because the more inviting and attractive the stay at our stations is, the more passengers we can attract to the climate-friendly railway and thus to “Strong Rail”.”

Deutsche Bahn opens the first station reception building made entirely of wood in Zorneding (Bavaria) on 18 December 2023. Copyright: Deutsche Bahn AG / Süleyman Siki / BK Media Solutions

Dr Corinna Salander, Head of the Railways Department at the Federal Ministry for Digital and Transport: “Serial, sustainable construction is a huge topic for us. This construction method combines three key advantages: it is faster, more sustainable and cheaper in the long term. We will therefore be taking a very close look at this pilot project because we believe that it offers great opportunities for the construction methods of the future.”

Photo: From left to right: Lisa Fahtz, DB Station&Service trainee Georg Reitsberger, Deputy District Administrator of Ebersberg Mareike Schoppe, Station Manager Dr. Corinna Salander, Head of Railways Department BMDV Bernd Koch, CEO DB Station&Service Piet Mayr, Mayor of Zorneding Thomas Huber, Member of State Parliament Alexander Bonfig, Head of Rail and Air Transport Department at the Bavarian State Ministry for Housing, Construction and Transport Leonie Kuharic, DB Station&Service trainee Pastor Birgit Reichenbacher, St. Christophorus Church Zorneding Pastor Christoph Müller, St. Martin’s Catholic Parish Zorneding

Bavaria’s Minister of State for Housing, Construction and Transport, Christian Bernreiter, was unable to attend the meeting. He was represented by the Head of the Department for Rail and Air Transport, Alexander Bonfig, but sent his greetings: “Our voluntary financial injection is an appreciation of Deutsche Bahn’s sustainable new station buildings – climate-friendly in construction and operation. Such sustainable projects are role models and in the interests of our environment, passengers and station users.”

Piet Mayr, First Mayor of the municipality of Zorneding: “This station building with its modern, trend-setting architecture and the well thought-out planning of this building are a real expression of an efficient, sustainable and liveable community, which will set the trend for many communities of our size in Germany with a railway connection in the future. I am delighted that another central meeting place has been created here for people from the town and the surrounding area.”

Zorneding station is also a green pioneer in terms of technology: a 140 square metre photovoltaic system supplies the facilities with solar energy. Surplus energy is collected by a sustainable second-life battery storage system from DB start-up encore, made from used electric car batteries, which stores up to 20 kWh of energy from the solar system and can release it as required. A climate-friendly heat pump ensures pleasant temperatures in winter and cooling in summer. Skylights allow daylight into the interior, so less artificial lighting is required. All lights are fitted with energy-saving LEDs. The wooden façade is glazed on the outside with open-pored, environmentally friendly paint. This ensures a pleasant indoor climate.

In addition to Zorneding, Haar is another small green railway station that is nearing completion. DB is currently completing the shell. After six months of construction, the topping-out wreath is already on the roof and the opening is planned for summer 2024.

Deutsche Bahn opens the first station reception building made entirely of wood in Zorneding (Bavaria) on 18 December 2023. Copyright: Deutsche Bahn AG / Süleyman Siki / BK Media Solutions

Deutsche Bahn is clearly committed to sustainability and its ecological, economic and social responsibility along its value chain and beyond. In line with its “Strong Rail” corporate strategy, DB is turning its stations into hubs of modern mobility in order to convince more people of the benefits of climate-friendly rail travel.

Other Photos: Copyright: Deutsche Bahn AG / Station & Service