No News Hasn't Been Good News
Further to my posts "An Indescribable Folly", "It Was Worth A Shot", and "The Mosel Shortcut", I was deeply saddened recently to read a progress report about the Upper Mosel Crossing on Jancis Robinson's website.
Construction of the increasingly delayed bridge is continuing slowly, but the project has faced the exact problem highlighted by surveyors from the outset: the difficulty of anchoring tall bridge support pillars in the unstable, landslide-prone Mosel soils. This has taken more time, more concrete, and assumedly much more money than planned and can only be having an ever more negative impact on some of Germany's oldest and finest vineyards, recognised by UNESCO as a site of world cultural heritage. As this article in The Drinks Business explains, apart from the aesthetic impact on the area and the physical harm done to surrounding vineyards, there are serious fears for the effect that the bridge and its highway will have upon the drainage of the hillsides along a substantial swathe of the Middle Mosel valley between Zeltingen, Ürzig and Erden.
This drone footage of the bridge under construction clearly shows the damage done to the vineyards around the bridge and to the forested hilltops at either end of the bridge:
Whilst much of this is now irreversible, and therefore further campaigning is fundamentally useless, allegedly there has already been a report highlighting the structural instability of the bridge even before it has been completed. Should it transpire that this is true, it will give the anti-bridge protesters no pleasure at all to say "We told you so".