Timber construction work at wildlife overpass completed



During several nights, carpenters assembled the 17.5-meter-long, 1.24-meter-high and 8-ton wooden girders. In the future, deer, foxes and small mammals will walk across the new wildlife bridge near Neuenkirch. This pleases the environment in various ways. Because the wildlife bridge is a real CO₂ reservoir.

In Neuenkirch, the Federal Roads Office (FEDRO) is already building the second wildlife bridge with a wooden covering after the Rynetel wildlife bridge. This makes sense because: «Building with wood is in keeping with the spirit of the times,» says Franz Koch, project manager from FEDRO (Zofingen branch) in an interview with the Neue Luzerner Zeitung. «This way, several tons of CO₂ can be stored.»

The wildlife overpass in the canton of Lucerne has a width of 50 meters and a length of around 36 meters. The clear height is 4.80 meters. Around 2500 cubic meters, mostly spruce wood from the Entlebuch region, will be used for it. The fact that the wood was felled in the surrounding forests and processed in regional companies is a benefit for the local economy. The environment is also pleased. After all, from an ecological point of view, local wood is clearly more advantageous than wood from abroad.

Montagearbeit in Neuenkirch

Dispensing with steel and concrete in building and infrastructure construction is an important contribution to climate protection. After all, one cubic meter of reinforced concrete is responsible for almost 500 kg of CO₂ emissions. Wood, on the other hand, stores around one ton of the greenhouse gas per cubic meter thanks to photosynthesis.

Of course, the production, transport and disposal of glulam also generate CO₂ emissions: One cubic meter of glulam for exterior use, made from Swiss wood, emits 190 kg CO₂. If the wood comes from Hungary and is processed in Austria, emissions of 442 kg CO₂ can be expected. However, the cross-laminated timber solution is better than reinforced concrete - regardless of the origin of the wood. Because: The bottom line is that per cubic meter of glulam installed, a net 810 kg or 558 kg of the greenhouse gas is stored - reinforced concrete emits 434 kg CO₂. The emission difference between reinforced concrete and glulam from Switzerland is 1244 CO₂ per cubic meter.

Grafik CO2-Emissionen

After deducting emissions for transport and disposal, the 2,500 cubic meters of spruce wood installed store a net total of over 2,000 tons of CO₂. If the roof had been concreted over the highway, its production would have polluted the environment with several hundred tons of the greenhouse gas. 

A similarly large wildlife overpass made of concrete is being built in Langnau near Reiden. This will allow the comparison in terms of maintenance and durability of the materials.



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