Innovation and Networks Executive Agency

TEN-T funds modernise French rail line

Creation date: December 7, 2012

A French section of rail network from Mulhouse to Chalampé on the German border will be inaugurated tomorrow to passenger traffic as part of a European Union supported project. The modernised rail section, supported by €700,000 of EU funds, will allow faster connections to and from Mülheim (Germany) and contributes to the realisation of the Railway axis Lyon/Genova-Basel-Duisburg-Rotterdam/Antwerpen (TEN-T Priority Project 24).

 

The TEN-T funded project involves a 17.5 km section of French single-track rail infrastructure. This section will be opened tomorrow to commercial passenger traffic for the first time in over 30 years, having previously only been used for freight services.

 

The project consisted of various actions aimed at modernising the rail section, notably:

  • Upgrading the line's signalling equipment;
  • Strengthening of the track foundations by replacing the ballast to enable continuous speeds of up to 90 km/h;
  • Automation of three level crossings.

Once all the ancillary works will be completed in December 2012, travelling times on the section will be shortened by 10 minutes and speed will be increased from 70 to 90 km/h, thus rendering rail more competitive against other less energy-efficient transport modes. Starting in August 2013 high speed trains between Paris, Lyon or the Mediterranean region (Marseille, Barcelona) will be able to use this part of rail infrastructure to transit through towards Freiburg-im-Breisgau in Germany.

 

The TEN-T Executive Agency (TEN-T EA), which has managed the project from its start, and the European Commission welcome tomorrow's inauguration as an important milestone for rail transport in the EU.