Marshalling Yard in Germany. Source: mirokola/Pixabay

German rail network gets another 1 billion for modernisation

Image: Pixabay. Mirokola

The Federal Ministry for Digital Affairs and Transport (BMDV) and Deutsche Bahn (DB) will direct an additional 1 billion euros towards the modernisation and digitisation of the German railways. Around 2.7 billion euros is now earmarked for investment.

The overarching goal of the plan is to rollout ETCS across the country. In tandem, old non-ETCS compatible interlockings will be replaced by digital ones. A uniform integrated command and control system will become the heart of the new German digital signalling system. With these actions, stakeholders aim to increase network capacity by 35 percent through more efficient operations, which should have the added benefit of fewer disruptions and better punctuality.

Benefits for freight

There will be benefits for freight traffic. DB will use the additional funds to equip the Rhine-Alps freight corridor from the Dutch North Sea ports to Italy with ERTMS. The extra money, 307 million euros to be precise, will also allow DB to make headway in the planning stages of rolling out ETCS on the Scandinavia-Mediterranean corridor. The section between Denmark and Austria is to be equipped with ETCS by the end of 2030.

Another 83 million euros will be directed towards the Stuttgart 21 project, which calls for a complete overhaul of the city’s main station, improved high-speed links and an upgrade of various lines in the metropolitan area. The area is to become Germany’s first digitised rail hub, with the core of the node to go into operation in 2025 with ETCS without signals.

Finally, some 11 million euros in plannings funds will flow to the high-speed line between Cologne and Frankfurt, where in the coming 6 years, DB aims to equip 200 kilometers of track with ETCS and digital interlockings.

This article was originally published on RailTech, our sister publication. 

Author: Nick Augusteijn

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