Siemens says it has begun construction on its new offshore wind turbine plant in Cuxhaven, Germany, only one year after the initial investment decision.
According to the company, soil compaction and the preparation of the pile foundation, with 1,900 concrete piles, have already been completed. Construction of the actual building was officially started by Siemens with a groundbreaking ceremony attended by Parliamentary State Secretary Enak Ferlemann.
Siemens says that the concrete mixers will start work on the 170,000-square-meter site, and civil engineering works for the foundations of the production facility will begin during the coming weeks. The completion of the production hall, with heights of up to 30 meters, is scheduled for mid-2017. Additionally, a two-story building with about a 3,800-square-meter usable area for offices and a canteen, as well as a technological building and a gatehouse, will also rise at the site.
Günter Willbold, head of Siemens Real Estate Germany, commented that as Siemens’ first new factory in the country in 20 years, this project clearly demonstrates “that Germany also has a future in production sites.”
Daniela Behrens, secretary of state in the Lower Saxony Ministry of Economics, called the project “the most important anchor for the German industrial offshore center in Cuxhaven. The offshore industry is key to the success of Germany’s energy transition.”
Sharing the groundbreaking spade with Behrens was Uwe Santjer, member of Lower Saxony’s parliament. Further cuts of the spade were done by the mayor of Cuxhaven, Ulrich Getsch, and Hans-Joachim Stietzel, head of the agency for the economic development of the City of Cuxhaven. On behalf of Siemens and the wind power and renewables division, CEO Markus Tacke also introduced the new project manager, Carsten-Sünnke Berendsen, at the ceremony, as he is taking on the project with the start of the building construction.
According to Siemens, production of the 7 MW direct-drive offshore wind turbines will start in summer 2017, coinciding with the start of manufacturing of the 75-meter rotor blades at the new plant in Hull, U.K.