The Bielefeld Viaduct

Initial rebuilding

After the war a second track was added to the "Gummibahn" but this was not enough to handle the rapidly recovering rail traffic needing to use the bridge. An emegency solution needed to be found. Damaged pillars were removed to allow for a steel bridge to be constructed.
 

Damaged pillars were removed

The rail authorities managed to purchase a 161m long steel bridge originally produced for the Wermacht. Work was begun in 1946 and the Schildesche (western) side of the viaduct was opened for goods train use in April 1947. Passenger trains were obliged to continue using the "Gummibahn".
 

The ex-Wehrmacht emergency bridge
 

This situation could not go on for ever as the "Gummibahn" was expensive to run and maintain. Its use annually added 15,000 km of travel and three extra railway crossings had to be provided for local roads.
 

Looking north-east