Lüneburg: a sinking district - the subsidence area


Lüneburg became rich from the mining of salt. The salt lies below the town and reaches just below the surface of the earth. But wealth has its price!

Today, part of the old town above the salt dome is sinking by up to 13 cm every year. This area is located between the German Salt Museum and Kalkberg.

In many places you can see the transition. Also, many of the historic houses are affected and have cracks, are crooked, or have had to be abandoned altogether. Many residents have had to secure their historic homes with concrete anchors.

The salt extraction was done by pumping salt water under the ground and thereby creating cavities - these are responsible for the subsidence today. At the crossroads "Waagestrasse / Neue Sülze" you can observe this quite clearly: the area was formerly straight and now clearly falls away in the direction of "Auf dem Meere". Here you will find the demolition edge of the subsidence area.

In the street "Auf dem Meere" there are picturesque residential and craft houses from the 16th and 17th centuries; these were not spared from the subsidence - you used to go up three steps to the front door, but now you sometimes even have to go one down. The consequences of subsidence are also visible at St. Michael's Church with the leaning columns and the west wing in the nave.

But the subsidence is monitored professionally: at 240 measuring points, the subsidence is checked every two years, but to date it has not stopped. The area can be entered without problems and is also used by cars.