Ostkreuz

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Ostkreuz
When this image was taken (2006), Ostkreuz had hardly changed since the 1920s (see article). This view faces eastward along Platform D, with Platform F visible above the train
Operations
Category 3 [1]
Type Interchange station
Platforms in use
DS100 code BOK
Station code 4809
Construction and location
Opened February 7, 1882
Location Friedrichshain, Rummelsburg
State Berlin
Country Germany
Home page www.bahnhof.de
52°30′11″N 13°28′8″E / 52.50306°N 13.46889°E / 52.50306; 13.46889Coordinates: 52°30′11″N 13°28′8″E / 52.50306°N 13.46889°E / 52.50306; 13.46889
Route information
List of railway stations in the Berlin area
A view of Ostkreuz from above. This view looks north along the Ringbahn, with the Stadtbahn visible on the left (west). The single line closest the camera connects the two, served by Platform A just off the left edge of the image. Platform F on the Ringbahn is centered, with the white roof. The large dark-colored tower was built to store water for steam trains previously running on these lines.

Berlin Ostkreuz (German for "East Crossing") is a station on the Berlin S-Bahn suburban railway, and one of the busiest in Germany. The station is in the former East Berlin district of Friedrichshain, now part of the borough of Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg. A smaller part of the station is in Rummelsburg, part of the borough of Lichtenberg.

Overview[edit]

The station was opened along with the Stadtbahn in 1882 under the name Stralau-Rummelsburg. It received its present name on May 15, 1933.[2] Along with Westkreuz it has long served as an interchange point between the Ringbahn that circumnavigates central Berlin and the Stadtbahn that passes through it. During the division of Berlin, when links between East and West Berlin transport networks were severed, Ostkreuz served as the main hub of the East Berlin S-Bahn network.

Ostkreuz was notable for remaining essentially unchanged since the 1920s, and its dilapidated state earned it the nickname Rostkreuz ("Rusty Crossing"). A modernization of the station was proposed as early as 1937 and again during East German rule. Plans were made again soon after German reunification to modernize Ostkreuz from its partly dilapidated state and turn it into a modern station with platforms for mainline services and stops for buses and the tramway. Actual work was delayed due to the high cost involved as well as the need to minimize disruption to the station's 140,000 daily passengers and the fact that the station is under historic preservation. Parts of it, such as the brick Ringbahn viaduct and the western pedestrian bridge, needed to be retained. The reconstruction of the station, planned to last 10 years, finally began in 2007.

On April 16, 2012, the current reconstruction work reached an important milestone. The opening of a 152 meter-long train shed, mainly consisting of steel and glass, transformed the station conspicuously into a modern railway station. In addition to the new train shed, an electronic interlocking system for signalized train control has been installed.

Operations[edit]

Prior to its renovation, the station's six platforms were:

  • Platform A, a triangular platform on the eastern end of the station lying between the curved lines connecting the Stadtbahn with the Ringbahn. The northern and southern faces of the platform handled traffic crossing from the westbound Stadtbahn onto the northern or southern Ringbahn (respectively). The northern connection was disused and eventually removed in 2006, leaving only the southern face of A in use, serving trains running north from Treptower Park and then turning west to Warschauer Strasse.
  • Platforms B and C were the outside platforms opposite the northern and southern faces of A (respectively), serving traffic from the Ringbahn heading eastward onto the Stadtbahn. They became dilapidated and were closed during East German rule, leaving service for westbound traffic only.
  • Platform D and E, the Stadtbahn platforms (each with two tracks), located at ground level, one for each of the two sets of lines that diverge east of the station. D is north of E and serves the lines that travel eastbound towards Strausberg, Wartenberg, and Ahrensfelde and the same lines traveling westbound. E is for lines that travel eastbound towards Erkner and the same lines traveling westbound.
  • Platform F is the tracks of the Ringbahn, located above.

Due to the station's archaic layout, it (along with nearby Warschauer Strasse station, currently being rebuilt) retains a platform-allocation system in which trains stop at its east-west Stadtbahn platforms (D and E) according to their line number, not direction. For example, the next train to Berlin Ostbahnhof could leave from either D, E, or the former tangential platform A, and moving from one of these platforms to another requires navigating steps and a pedestrian walkway. It is a common sight to see passengers waiting on the walkway until they see where the next westbound train will arrive.

Due to the renovation, the tangential platforms have been eliminated altogether, so that trains between Treptower Park and Warschauer Strasse do not stop in either direction. The northern tangential line will not be restored.

The station code is BOK, with the subcodes BOK F (Ringbahn platform), BOK D (Platform D, Stadtbahn), BOK E (Platform E, toward Erkner).

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "Stationspreisliste 2014" [Station price list 2014] (PDF) (in German). DB Station&Service. 24 October 2013. Retrieved 1 January 2014. 
  2. ^ "Aenderung von Bahnhofsnamen". Die Reichsbahn (Deutsche Reichsbahn-Gesellschaft) 9 (17). April 26, 1933.  |chapter= ignored (help)

Sources[edit]

  • Andreas Butter, Hans-Joachim Kirsche und Erich Preuß: Berlin Ostkreuz – Die Drehscheibe des S-Bahn-Verkehrs, Geramond Verlag, München, 2000, ISBN 3-932785-24-X

External links[edit]

Preceding station   Berlin S-Bahn   Following station
Terminus S3
toward Erkner
One-way operation
S41
toward Ringbahn (clockwise)
One-way operation
S42
toward Ringbahn (counter-clockwise)
toward Spandau
S5
toward Potsdam Hbf
S7
toward Ahrensfelde
toward Spandau
S75
toward Wartenberg
toward Birkenwerder
S8
toward Zeuthen
S85
toward Grünau
(move not since winter 2009)
toward Pankow
S9