Siemens Cuxhaven

Largest wind turbine factory in the world

The Siemens Group has high ambitions for offshore wind power. At the Cuxhaven location since 2017 there have been plans to build nacelles with a length of approx. 15 m and a diameter of approx. 6.5 m with a weight of 200 tonnes (so-called D7 platform) for offshore wind turbines. In the summer 2016 a working group was commissioned to construct a production hall including all auxiliary buildings. The working group partners are the Heitkamp Ingenieur- und Kraftwerksbau and the Ballast Nedam Infra B.V. The wind turbines produced in future by the facility will provide up to 7 megawatts and produce up to 32 million kWh of electrical energy per year. The production hall is just as enormous as the nacelles and without the auxiliary buildings has a floor area of
approx. 332 x 156 m and a height of more than 30 m.

The completion time for the construction project was ambitious. The production hall and all the auxiliary buildings had to be finished only 10 months after commissioning of the project. Leinemann Partner was commissioned at a very early stage to provide legal support for the working group. After the contracts had been awarded, a number of planning deficiencies came to light and their correction delayed the project although the project could not be postponed. Additional negative factors were unfavourable weather conditions and conflicts with fitting of the indoor cranes which was awarded separately. In spite of these adverse circumstances, the working group supported the owner to the best of its ability to minimise the negative effects on the schedule. Due to the high consulting costs, the tight schedule, and the associated risks, a decision was made to position Leinemann lawyer Andreas Jacob for a number of days a week at the construction site. This close connection to the project management enabled the engineers, businessmen and lawyer to develop an effective and mutual understanding of the construction task and its contractual requirements. Meetings were held almost on a daily basis to find solutions at short notice to urgent questions which were then passed on to the owner and therefore it was possible to considerably limit project risks. A lawyer can only offer immediate assistance when the desk of his outside office is located directly in the container of the project management. The experience of the participants left an appetite for more.