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Research for the improvement of inner-city traffic and underground construction

STUVA e. V. is a non-profit and internationally active research company. Today it has about 250 corporate members. Everybody who is anybody is represented: industry, associations, cities, transport companies, engineering offices, universities.

In this way, STUVA brings together all the important authorities for tunnelling, tunnel operation and other traffic systems. STUVA events such as the STUVA conference with accompanying trade fair (STUVA-Expo) have established themselves as important industry gatherings for more than 50 years.

We are your competent partner for:

  • Tunnelling
  • Sealing of structures
  • Fire protection planning of underground structures
  • Noise and vibration protection
  • Safety of structures
  • Environmental protection and occupational safety
  • Public transportation
  • Barrier-free construction
  • Documentation and Statistics
STUVA office
STUVA's new office building (completion 12/2018)

Tasks & goals

Non-profit status in the course of time


The STUVA is a non-profit, neutral research company that deals with fundamental and object research in the following areas of inner-city traffic and underground construction:

  • Special issues of urban transport (rail, road and pedestrian traffic) in tunnels, at ground level and in high altitude
  • Tunneling and civil engineering, load tests on tunnel linings, tunneling methods, shotcrete technology, corrosion protection
  • Waterproofing in tunnels, bridges and civil engineering: Surface waterproofing with bitumen or plastic waterproofing membranes; impermeable concrete, joint sealing with joint and swelling tapes as well as injection hoses
  • Protection of the environment against noise, vibrations and exhaust gases caused by rail and motor vehicle traffic; Exhaust Air Treatment Systems
  • Safety issues related to the construction and operation of tunnels, in particular accident prevention, fire safety, operation and ventilation concepts
  • Occupational safety in the construction of tunnels by reducing noise, diesel exhaust and dust
  • Pavement and roadway joints of asphalt on bridges, in tunnels and troughs
  • Supply and disposal (small drives), walk-in supply channels

For specific topics in these fields, research is carried out in the context of EU projects or contracts for the federal government, federal states, municipalities, research-promoting bodies and institutions of the economy.


Through the activities of the STUVA, inner-city traffic and underground construction as a whole should be further developed and promoted. In detail, this is done:

  • through research in the fields mentioned in order to develop new insights into methods, calculation methods, design possibilities, etc. or to further develop existing methods.
  • by publishing the investigations to inform the interested experts about the results of the work and to advise on the introduction of new materials and processes in special cases
  • to translate, evaluate and publish, in international cooperation, the results of foreign investigations, either separately or as part of the research work
  • with a book and magazine documentation to collect and make accessible the publications on the mentioned subject areas.

Executive & Advisory Board

Executive Board

The Executive Board of STUVA is represented by the following members elected by the General Assembly:

  • Univ.-Prof. Dr.-Ing. Martin Ziegler, ZAI Ziegler und Aulbach Ingenieurgesellschaft mbH, Aschaffenburg, former RWTH Aachen (Chairman)
  • Dipl.-Ing. Edgar Schömig, Ed. Züblin AG, Stuttgart (2nd Vice Chairman)
  • Dipl.-Ing. Lars Babendererde, BabEng GmbH, Lübeck
  • StadtDir. Dipl.-Ing. Andrea Blome, Stadt Köln
  • Dipl.-Ing. Tim Dahlmann-Resing, VAG Verkehrs-Aktiengesellschaft, Nürnberg (1st Vice Chairman)
  • Dr.-Ing. Katja Hüske, DB Netz AG, Frankfurt
  • Prof. Dr.-Ing. Dr.-Ing. E. h. Günter Girnau (Honorary Member of the Board).

Advisory Board

The STUVA Advisory Board assists the Board in identifying research needs and consists of the following members personally appointed for their high qualifications:

  • Dr.-Ing. Frank Abel, HOCHTIEF Infrastructure GmbH, Essen
  • Dr.-Ing. Rune Brandt, HBI Haerter, Zürich (CH)
  • Prof. Dr. jur. Klaus Englert, prof englert + partner Rechtsanwälte, Schrobenhausen
  • Dipl.-Ing. Claus-Dieter Hauck, Abteilung Stadtbahn, Brücken- und Tunnelbau der Landeshauptstadt Stuttgart
  • Dipl.-Ing. Martin Holfelder, Max Bögl Stiftung & Co. KG, München
  • Dipl.-Ing. Stefan Jacob, Max Bögl Stiftung & Co. KG, Zentralbereich Tunnelbau, München
  • Prof. Dr.-Ing. Rolf Katzenbach, Ingenieursozietät Professor Dr.-Ing. Katzenbach GmbH, Frankfurt am Main
  • Dipl.-Ing. Markus Köppel, Eisenbahn-Bundesamt, Bonn
  • Dr.-Ing. Christoph Müller, Bundesverband der Deutschen Zementindustrie e. V., Düsseldorf
  • Dipl.-Ing Christian Nagl, ÖBB Infrastruktur AG, Wien (A)
  • Dipl.-Ing. Ingo Pähler, Amt für Umwelt-und Verbraucherschutz der Landeshauptstadt Düsseldorf
  • Dipl.-Ing. Sonja Rode, Amt für Tunnel, Brücken und Stadtbahnbau, Stadt Köln
  • DirProf Dr.-Ing. Andreas Rogge, BAM Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung, Berlin
  • Dipl.-Ing. Martin Schmitz, Verband Deutscher Verkehrsunternehmen (VDV), Köln
  • Dipl.-Ing. Jörn Schwarze, Kölner Verkehrs-Betriebe AG, Köln
  • Dipl.-Ing Ulf Spod, BG Bau Berufsgenossenschaft der Bauwirtschaft, Frankfurt a. Main
  • Prof. Dr.-Ing. Markus Thewes, Lehrstuhl für Tunnelbau, Leitungsbau und Baubetrieb der Ruhr-Universität Bochum




Your professional future with STUVA

You would like to apply with us? Here you will find hints and information about vacancies in our company. Apply online - we look forward to receiving your application.

Testing facilities

STUVA research for the infrastructure of tomorrow

Extreme frost and heat: On the temperature-controlled modular test circuit substructures can be tested at speeds of up to 130 km/h in fast motion

Since the 1970s, the STUVA has its own hall areas for carrying out experiments. In the meantime, three test halls with a total area of more than 2,000 square meters are available in Cologne, which are used for trial and testing facilities of various designs and tasks. Some remarkable assets are unique in the world, at least in the combination of their data and operating parameters. These facilities include:

  • the large-scale test facility for loading and deformation behavior of tunnel tubes, e.g. with prefabricated reinforced concrete parts (tubbings), in the original dimensions (tunnel length approx. 4 m, tunnel outer diameter up to 16 m);
  • various test facilities for the investigation of the behavior of tunnel linings under different loads (shear behavior, flaking tests, torsional rigidity and load transfer in tubbing joints)
  • a large-scale test facility (test circuit) for investigating the interaction between wheel and carriageway under a given traffic load (maximum speed 100 km/h at 5 t wheel load or 130 km/h for car wheel) and temperature stresses between -30 ° C and + 60 ° C;
  • various test stands for waterproofing (surface and joint sealing) with different tasks;
  • a test track for the superstructure of railways to determine the static and dynamic properties of rail bearings, sub ballast mats and mass-spring systems

The international tunnel construction family

Worldwide close networking of STUVA

Tarcisio B. Celestino, President-in-Office of the International Tunneling Association summed it up in his opening speech to the STUVA 2017 Conference: "The STUVA is one of the world's leading institutions for communicating technology and know-how for underground construction and consistent use underground areas."; In addition, with Günter Girnau and Alfred Haack, two former STUVA directors, have also been presidents of the ITA. 

The bringing together of experts and the exchange of expertise has always been a special concern of the STUVA. The development and work of the DAUB - German Committee for Underground Construction e. V. - would hardly have been possible without the participation of the STUVA in the form that has taken place since the founding of the body in 1972. From the beginning, the office is located at the STUVA.

There are close professional and personal contacts to many national and international trade associations.

ITA-Präsident Celestino at the STUVA conference 2017


The past meets the future - the history of STUVA e. V.

(source: Landesarchiv Baden Wuerttemberg Staatsarchiv Freiburg W 134 Nr. 048790)

Hardly any social sector has changed as radically since 1960 as the transport infrastructure. Where once relatively simple streetcars had to share the street space with the rapidly growing individual traffic, now high-tech, fast and comfortable subways and urban railways drive on their own railway tracks. Today's networking of public transport, the comfort and safety of passengers or the increasing design of transport for a genuine participation of people with limited mobility - the STUVA has been playing an important role in all of this.

In particular, the construction industry has developed from the laborious open construction, which stressed the residents and cities extremely, to a highly automated tunneling technology with tunnel boring machines. From the very beginning, the STUVA has contributed research, development, testing and advice to the rapid development of transport infrastructures and, as a non-profit association, has always been concerned with the common good. 

In the chronicle of STUVA you will find some selected stations in the history of the company since its foundation in 1960.