Strengthening rail links between Croatia and the rest of Europe

The renovation and upgrading of infrastructure around Zagreb's main railway station will allow international rail traffic to flow more quickly and easily through this important hub in south east Europe.

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Upgrading infrastructure will increase capacity at Zagreb’s main station. Upgrading infrastructure will increase capacity at Zagreb’s main station.

The four-year project aims at upgrading the signalling and interlocking infrastructure around Zagreb's main station so that line capacity can be increased and speed restrictions removed, bringing immediate benefits to the 50 000 commuters that use the railway in the Croatian capital every day.

Modernisation of a crucial international junction

Zagreb is located at an important intersection of the trans-European transport network (the so-called EU TEN-T programme). Croatia acts as a bridge between the north and the south and its railways link Central Europe via Salzburg, Zagreb and Belgrade with Thessalonica in Greece (TEN Corridor X). Another TEN corridor connects Budapest via Zagreb with the Adriatic port of Rijeka and is one of the most important rail corridors in Croatia. 

However, due to the age and poor condition of the signalling system on that route, which is more than 70 years old, the rail speed at Zagreb Central Station is currently limited to 30 km/h. The project is tackling this problem by upgrading the system, so that higher speeds can be achieved, while enhancing its safety and reliability. Interlocking equipment is also being improved.

Once completed, the severe speed restrictions on the line will be eliminated, thus removing a major bottleneck for international rail traffic coming through the station. The capacity of the station will be increased and maintenance costs reduced.

Connecting the country and beyond

The project is encouraging growth in national and international rail services for both passengers and freight traffic, boosting Croatia's economy as 46 % of the country's rail freight is export-oriented.

The work is also bringing further improvements to Croatia's rail network, as part of the project includes the modernisation of interfaces to the existing systems in the neighbouring stations and railway line sections. This upgrading will open the way to a series of other projects aimed at revamping the railway infrastructure and corridors in Croatia.

"Croatia's rail transport system is an important bridge in the international rail network while also being vital for connecting the country’s rich agricultural regions with its large industrial and consumer centres of central Croatia. The important upgrading work at Zagreb station will open to further modernisation across the network which will be of great benefit to the economy of Croatia."

  • Zrinka Ivanović Kelemen, Croatian Railways Infrastructure

Total investment and EU funding

Total investment for the project “Zagreb main railway station signalling and interlocking system” is EUR 12 854 760, with the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) contributing EUR 9 898 046. The project is funded through the priority “Upgrading Croatia's rail transport system” of the Transportation Operational Programme for the 2007-2013 programming period.

Draft date