Paul-Heyse tunnel and infamous infrastructure

north entrance to the Paul-Heyse tunnel with street name plate.

some works of infrastructure happen to become social spaces of gathering like the Hackerbrücke and others become infamous places to run away from like the Paul-Heyse tunnel under the main train station in Munich.

Both works of infrastructure satisfy very well a practical need, and a comparison is from the very beginning unfair: We perceive bridges as beautiful works rather more often than we do about tunnels. But there are reasons why anyone would try to pass through this tunnel the swiftest the better: It is terribly noisy, dark, dirty, the tiled walls crumble, mucky water drops from the ceiling in several spots, way too narrow for bicyclists and pedestrians to use the sideways safely.

Yet, it is a landmark of Munich. Not one that you would like to show to any tourist, but one that tells a story. After all some stories are made of the words that aren’t said.

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