CZ/SK verze

Bridging Borders: Revitalizing Railway Connections Between Czech Republic and Germany

Bridging Borders: Revitalizing Railway Connections Between Czech Republic and Germany
photo: Czech Ministry of Transport/Bridging Borders: Revitalizing Railway Connections Between Czech Republic and Germany
16 / 10 / 2023

Today, Czech Transport Minister Martin Kupka and his German counterpart, Federal Minister of Digital Affairs and Transport Volker Wissing, solidified their commitment to enhancing railway connectivity between the Czech Republic and Germany by signing a joint statement outlining their future plans.

Minister Kupka expressed, "Daily, our citizens and businesses experience the limitations of our current railway connection with Germany. At present, our main connection via Ústí nad Labem is strained to its maximum capacity. The urgency to establish new and modern railway connections is paramount, and I'm encouraged by Germany's commitment to this endeavour, especially with the upcoming revision of the Federal Road Development Plan." Kupka further added, "Constructing high-speed railways and upgrading the existing ones will demand significant investment. Our collective aim is to collaborate on negotiations with the European Union to ensure we secure ample funding. A unified voice from our nations will undoubtedly resonate throughout Europe."

Federal Minister Wissing emphasized the European vision, stating, "Cross-border mobility epitomizes the spirit of European unity. However, robust infrastructure is indispensable for realizing this vision. Through our accord today, our primary objective is to champion the evolution of an eco-friendly railway system. By reducing travel times between Berlin and Prague and electrifying the southern routes from Munich and Nuremberg, we aim to invigorate both passenger and freight rail transportation between our countries."

The joint statement notably highlights the shared ambition to construct the high-speed "Via Vindobona" railway line, connecting Berlin, Prague, and Vienna. The most significant feature of this new route will be the impressive 29-kilometer cross-border tunnel beneath the Ore Mountains. The Railway Administration is presently orchestrating a contractor competition for a geological survey in the proposed tunnel's vicinity, with the survey set to commence this year.

Another focal point of the partnership is the enhancement of the connection to Bavaria. This involves the modernization, electrification, and capacity expansion of the railway line connecting Pilsen, Domažlice, Česká Kubice, the state border, Schwandorf, and culminating in Munich/Nuremberg. Notably, on the Czech side, there are ongoing preparations to modernize the section from Pilsen to Domažlice leading up to the state border. Minister Kupka accentuated the Czech Republic's intention to utilize this track for both passenger and consistent freight transport, aiming for a frequency of at least one freight train every hour throughout the day.

In addition, both ministers concurred on the significance of modernizing the Prague - Pilsen - Cheb - Nuremberg route. "We ardently support the Cheb connection, deeming it a promising route for interregional transport between the Karlovy Vary Region and Bavaria, and potentially even for freight transport originating from the Ústí Region," stated Kupka.

The dialogue between the ministers also touched upon the evolving European transport legislation, underscoring the importance of sustainable transport, reducing emissions, and advocating for the utilization of synthetic fuels.

Source: Czech Ministry of Transport