The rail track’s first section of the "Sächsisch-Baiersche Eisenbahn" runs between the cities Leipzig and Altenburg. It was opened for traffic after seven years of intense negotiations and fourteen months construction time. The trains made stops at simple shacks which only provided scanty shelter against the rain. Yet the architectural vision of the architect Christian August Eduard Pötzsch – the Bayerischer Bahnhof – came to the rescue. The building process had already started, financed through private capital stock, because the investors expected a big capital gain through the train business.
The classical architecture buildings of the Bayrischer Bahnhof began their everyday business and functioned as a prototype for train station architecture of the time. However, not everybody found the grand complex agreeable. The investors called it "temple of exuberance."
We have to be thankful for the stubbornness of architect Pötzsch who did not renegotiate his vision and, in the end, triumphed over the cheap investors.
Not the train station itself, but the cost-intense, complicated bridge constructions in the Vogtland were responsible for the bankruptcy of the private investors in 1847. The Kingdom of Saxony stepped in and founded the national train between Leipzig and Görlitz.
During 1875 one million passengers travelled through the Bayerischer Bahnhof. One can imagine the crowded hurry on the platform. The station was Leipzig’s connection to the south and sent travellers on their way to reach the destinations Bavaria, Austria, and Italy. The Bayerischer Bahnhof gained importance as transportation hub in Leipzig’s striving business environment as congress and commerce centre. Kings and gentry as well as tradesmen and workers passed through the station.
The golden era of the Bayerischer Bahnhof ended in 1912 when the main station at the other end of the city was opened and all long-distance travel trains departed there.
Unser Vorplatz wurde erstmals am 7.6.1843 benannt – und zwar mit „Am Baierischen Platz“. Dabei kam die ursprüngliche Schreibweise mit –ai- zum Einsatz, obwohl das Y seit 1825 in Bayern verbindlich war. Sicher lag das auch an der Betitelung der Sächsisch-Baierschen Eisenbahn-Compagnie. Man hat also 1843 auf die alte Schreibweise zurückgegriffen – sicher auch deshalb, weil sie in Leipzig gebräuchlich war. 1890 war unsere Adresse immer noch „Am Baierischen Platz“, der Bahnhof selbst präsentierte sich aber nun schon unter neuer Firmierung, da er seit 1847 dem sächsischen Staat gehörte und gleich einen modernen Namen bekommen musste. Der neue Schriftzug „Sächs. Bayersche Staatseisenbahn“ findet sich heute in dieser Form wieder am Portikus, auch wenn selbiger in den 1920er nochmals fiel. Im Jahr 1929 wurde unser Platz in „Bayrischer Platz“ umbenannt – aus welchem Grund, das lässt sich derzeit nur vermuten. Wahrscheinlich störte das „Am“, weil es für einen Platz ja nicht korrekt ist. Und dann hatte sich das „y“ in 100 Jahren einfach durchgesetzt. Das fehlende „e“ ist eine Besonderheit, denn es steht für eine umgangssprachliche Bezeichnung, während bayerisch als offiziell gilt.
The Bayerischer Bahnhof was partly destroyed during air strikes of the Allied troops during the Second World War. The passenger area, the main hall, and the administration building were almost completely destroyed, yet the daily business continued. After the war not enough financial resources were available to rebuild the train station. The Bayerischer Bahnhof slowly decayed, but all plans to tear the buildings down were put off.
After the German reunification in 1990 Bavarian friends and supporters of trains and historical architecture started an initiative that led the Deutsche Reichsbahn to rebuild the eye-catching Portikus. The historical landmark was completely restored and is now as majestic as ever.
The Deutsche Bahn AG and the brewery owner Thomas Schneider announced their plans to rebuild and to restore the buildings and to open a restaurant at the historical site. With these plans the Bayerischer Bahnhof finally had a new perspective.
The building project began in May 1999. The historical buildings were restored with the greatest care and meticulous attention to detail under the supervision of a committee for the preservation of historic landmarks. The public followed the whole process with great interest – since the Bayerischer Bahnhof is a landmark representative of the city of Leipzig.
On 19 July 2000, the Gasthaus & Gosebrauerei Bayerischer Bahnhof welcomed its first guests. Miss Ingrid Biedenkopf, wife of the prime minister of Saxony, performed the ceremonious opening of the new place of hospitality. The old train station was transformed into a gemstone of Leipzig’s food and drink culture.
The Gasthaus & Gosebrauerei Bayerischer Bahnhof is the home of a beer specialty: the Original Leipziger Gose. This specialty and other beers are brewed at the in-house brewery. With the establishment of the restaurant and the brewery the Bayerischer Bahnhof has come to a full swing revival.
The City-Tunnel Leipzig creates a connection between the south area of the city and the city centre in the north, including the main train station. The new connection is going to increase the speed of the regional rail travel with time savings of up to 20 minutes.
Yesterday numerous well spirited fans celebrated our national soccer team in the full EM Arena at the Portikus. The next hurdle will be on Saturday, 02 July 2016 at 9 pm. The team of the Bayerischen Bahnhof is looking forward to welcoming the fans.
There is still the opportunity to obtion one of the coveted catering coupons.