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article imageCologne Cathedral getting a shake-up from new underground railway

By Anne Sewell     Jan 10, 2013 in World
Cologne - Earlier this week, a new underground train line became operational in Cologne, Germany. Since then, Germany's most famous landmark, Cologne Cathedral, is "under stress" in what can only be called "bad vibrations."
Cologne Cathedral, the famous Gothic creation, took over six centuries to complete and is a World Heritage Site. The Cathedral is also the largest Gothic church in Northern Europe and attracts 20,000 visitors a day.
When trains first started running on Cologne's No. 5 underground line to the new Dom/Hauptbahnhof station this week, the first tremors were felt.
The new tunnels were apparently dug several years ago, but it was only when the line went into use that the problems occurred, and visitors to the cathedral have reported feeling vibrations and hearing noises during their visit.
These vibrations were confirmed by an earthquake monitoring station, which has five sensors inside the cathedral. Apparently a nearby philharmonic concert hall has also been affected.
Cathedral Provost Norbert Feldhoff said in a statement, "It cannot be ruled out that these effects will cause long term damage to the building."
The Kölnische Rundschau reported that cathedral officials have written a letter to the Mayor of Cologne to warn him of potential damage to the famous landmark. Apparently the Mayor promptly called a crisis meeting with the local transport authority to discuss the situation.
There is concern because in 2009, two people died when a historical archive building in Cologne collapsed, due to mistakes made in the construction of a nearby underground rail track. The building contained thousands of historical records dating back 1,000 years.
More about Germany, Cologne, cologne cathedral, Subway, Underground
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