What is the fascination? What drives us? The projects we show here have presented our teams with special challenges. Many things turned out differently, some things went wrong. Always getting back up again. Because a solution can be found for every problem—often after hard work.
Matthias Karthe has taught an industrial plant in Newhaven in southern England to float. "Sinking a shell that has just been erected directly again is something you first have to dare to do." With his team, the engineer developed a floating caisson, without which the project probably could not have been realized.
“Managing such a large and interesting project, and in my home country at that, I just had to be there,” Felix von Platen recalls of the “project of a lifetime.” A good 20 years ago, von Platen was in charge of the water transfer project for HOCHTIEF in Lesotho, which included the Matsuko weir and a tunnel over six kilometers long. The technical challenge was by no means everything. The team lived in a camp and had to look after themselves at an altitude of 2,000 meters. Von Platen, now Head of the Technical Competence Center at HOCHTIEF, was mayor, clinic director and school principal all in one at the time. And to make a phone call, he had to climb another 1,000 meters to the summit. The engineer and his daughter Meike, who is now working as a dual student at HOCHTIEF, provide insights into their adventure in Africa at Lake Baldeney in Essen.
Dorothea Musik fell in love twice over while building a bridge in Scotland - with the city of Edinburgh, its people, nature and pubs. But above all, she fell in love with the "Queensferry Crossing," a 2.7-kilometer-long river crossing near the metropolis. "That's where my heart goes out to me as an architect." We accompanied Dorothea Musik on a visit to the "project of a lifetime".
HOCHTIEF Construction Manager Bettina Henneke shows her 95-year-old great-uncle her construction site, the A1 bridge in Leverkusen. A place that Paul Stern knows well. He helped build the previous bridge on the same site in the 1960s. “I'm continuing the family tradition,” Henneke says in the film “Project of Our Lives.”
Udo Töben has experienced a lot in 36 years at HOCHTIEF. Venezuela, Sweden, Hamburg—these are just a few of the stations the engineer has been to. In 2022, he experienced “the biggest thing I've done so far” during the expansion of the A6 in Germany: the transverse shifting of the 820-meter-long and 46,000-ton bridge over the Neckar Valley. In the film, he talks about his job on Axis 20.
"A project full of surprises". That's how Christiane Zimmermann got to know subway construction in Copenhagen over four years. Here she experienced what teamwork means, how the challenges of a project weld together and friendships develop. The civil engineer appreciates the Danish way of balancing family and career.
It probably was the most impressive relocation in the history of humankind—and HOCHTIEF concerted it half a century ago. The rescue of the Abu Simbel temple complex was of gigantic dimensions and developed into a race against time. For Hans-Michael Treiber it was “the project of my life”.
... through the mountain Jürgen Mielenz experiences some of the most exciting and intense moments of his working life. When it comes to the Gotthard Tunnel, Mielenz has his own particular type of tunnel vision. He sees himself standing in the rock cave illuminated by fluorescent lamps, the soil rough underfoot, looking up to the roof that was blasted free 15 meters above, and thinks: There are another 2,000 meters of rock on top of it. It’s hard to imagine.