SIEMENS, MUCH LIKE AEG and Daimler, is a present-day German company with roots stretching back to the 19th century. Founded in an office on Kreuzberg’s Schöneberger Straße in 1847, the company had offices in 13 countries by the time of founder Werner von Siemens’ death in 1892.
By 1900, Siemens had expanded their operations in Berlin, and bought a huge swath of land in eastern Spandau bordering Tegel, Reinickendorf, and Charlottenburg-Nord. This would become Siemensstadt, home to numerous factories owned by the company, along with new residential buildings capable of housing thousands of workers.
In order to connect this new mini-metropolis to greater Berlin, the Siemensbahn, a new railway line, was constructed between 1927 and 1929. Comprising three stations along 4.5 kilometers of track, the line extended northwest from Jungfernheide, with three stations (Wernerwerk, Siemensstadt, and Gartenfeld) offering S-Bahn service to the Hauptstadt.
With the S-Bahn strike of 1980, though, the line was shuttered, and has been abandoned ever since. The elevated line, which borders parks and residential buildings, has been gradually taken back by the surrounding nature, with trees and flowering vines sprouting from tracks and station platforms.
In 2018, Siemens, alongside members of the “Red-Red-Green” coalition, announced plans for “Siemensstadt 2.0”, an initiative to bring new residential buildings, schools, startups, and hotels to the district. Whether it pans out, and whether it could mean the resuscitation of the Siemensbahn, remains to be seen.
Access: The exit of U-Siemensdamm (U7) is one block west of the elevated tracks, which proceed from southeast to northwest through the district.
All stations and tracks are closed to the public, and while entering the stretch between the former Siemensstadt and Gartenfeld stations is relatively easy, it is done at one’s own risk, as is proceeding along the tracks, which are unmaintained. For an excellent guide to the entire Siemensbahn, along with numerous photos of the platforms and tracks, see this Abandoned Berlin article from several years ago.