Large Construction Projects in Basel in 2023
Several large construction projects will be taking place in Basel this year that aim to enhance climate protection and improve the public transport infrastructure.
Works to Increase Climate Protection
Basel incinerates its waste, and the heat created during this process is used to produce steam that drives turbines and generates electricity for district households. In addition, the extracted heat also warms 45,000 households through a 223-km pipeline network, as well as numerous small and large businesses. The large red and white striped smokestack that dominates the skyline in the northwest corner of Basel is the chimney of Basel’s incineration facility. The polluting soot from the smoke is captured in a series of specialized filters, which are disposed of as solid waste, thus minimizing air pollution.
The Canton of Basel-Stadt and Basel’s energy company (IWB) will massively expand climate-friendly district heating in Basel by 2037. With this expansion, 77,000 tons of CO2 can be saved annually. The goal is that by 2037, 70% of Basel households will be connected to the district heating network. This offers homeowners a simple alternative to fossil fuel heating systems. However, the expansion of the district heating system requires extensive roadworks, such as those currently occurring in Freie Strasse in the city center, around Hardstrasse, and in the Wettstein/Grenzacherstrasse area. In 2023, expansion of district heating will focus on Gellert, lower Kleinbasel, and Wettstein quarter.
Whenever possible, these works will be combined with other infrastructure projects to promote climate-friendly public transport and include the creation of new green spaces.
Tram Closures and Traffic Diversions in 2023
BVB has to regularly renew their tram track systems. This year, in conjunction with the expansion of the district heating systems and other projects, the cantonal building and transport department, BVB, and IWB will begin major construction work at various sites in Kleinbasel, Gellert, and Gundeli that will require the use of buses as a substitute on tram lines 2, 10, 11, 14, and 16 for several weeks. In some cases, these projects will also involve restrictions for motorists and cyclists at various times during the year and into 2024:
- For the renewal of the Dreispitz junction, Münchensteinerstrasse will be closed to traffic in the direction of Münchenstein from mid-February 2023 to mid-2024 between Dornacherstrasse and Leimgrubenweg. Also for the renewal of this junction, a tram replacement with buses on lines 10 (probably between the Schwertrain auxiliary stop and the MPark stop) and 11 (between the Ruchfeld and MPark stops) is planned for the six weeks of the summer holidays 2023.
- Grenzacherstrasse must be closed from the beginning of March to the end of August 2023 due to construction work by Roche and the renewal of the Wettsteinallee/Grenzacherstrasse square.
- Due to the renovation of Hardstrasse, a tram replacement with buses will run on line 14 for 12 weeks from the beginning of April 2023. This work is coordinated with the simultaneous track construction of the BLT in Muttenz.
- BVB is also expected to renovate the tracks on the Margarethenbrücke between September and December 2023, which will require a tram replacement with buses on lines 2 and 16.
- In the summer, BVB will be replacing a piece of track on Güterstrasse between Pfeffingerstrasse and Tellplatz during operation.
- Shorter tram closures will be necessary for track work at Voltaplatz in the first half of the year and at the Brausebad and the Schifflände in the autumn.
- Construction work on the section between Zoll Otterbach and Lange Erlen is expected to start in mid-2023 and will result in restrictions for traffic coming from Germany.
For more information on current construction sites affecting public transport, check out the BVB website.