A new transport Interface in the South Baltic area

The INTERFACE project and its spin-off, INTERFACE PLUS, have contributed to territorial cooperation on transport in the South Baltic by bringing together local authorities, ports, ferry operators and tourist organisations to improve cross-border connections. They have combined transport modes into a single product, developed links and improved service for foot passengers on ferries.

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The Rostock Philharmonic Orchestra at the opening ceremony of the InterCombi ticket system (c) Andreas Schubert, Hanseatic City of Rostock The Rostock Philharmonic Orchestra at the opening ceremony of the InterCombi ticket system (c) Andreas Schubert, Hanseatic City of Rostock

" I like to travel. Denmark and Sweden are among my favourite destinations. I am quite familiar with deficits of ferry traffic in former times, and I’m very pleased that foot passenger services and facilities have changed a lot to make travelling easier and more comfortable. The InterCombi ticket is one of these new market ideas which really make sense. My journeys are now much more convenient. "

Tilman Schubert, Cross-border passenger from Rostock

The InterCombi ticket allows foot passenger journeys on a single ticket between Rostock (Germany) and Nykøbing (Denmark) by buses and ferries operated by different carriers. Around 10 000 tickets were sold in the development period. The intercombi-ticket.de website, available in Danish, German and English, provides timetable information and allows passengers to book journeys up to two hours prior to departure.

First timetable of its kind

INTERFACE PLUS solved the problem of fetching, exchanging and integrating real-time data for different modes, operators and countries by means of a hub enabling data exchange between Germany and Denmark. Data is used for timetable information and stationary displays. The project also integrated the Danish port of Gedser into the German timetable information system and did the same for Rostock as regards the Danish system.

INTERFACE introduced the first real-time multi-modal cross-border timetable information system in Europe. Real-time previews of about an hour for German public transport and six hours for Scandlines ferries are possible.

A real-time ferry information system

INTERFACE PLUS devised a real-time ferry information system which does not interfere with on-board equipment. It combines automatic identification system data and analysis of routes and operating conditions to give precise forecasts. The project also extended a DFInet server developed for Rostock public transport to incorporate real-time functions with connection information.

A study explored the potential for restoring passenger services, suspended in 2011, between Darłowo and Ustka in Poland and Nexø on Bornholm. It examined the market, set out a ferry connection concept, considered public support scenarios and legal aspects and calculated profit and loss. Its proposals contributed to restoration of the Darłowo-Borhnolm route.

The project also developed portlink.eu, an online portal for public transport between ferry terminals and city centres, currently covering 15 destinations. After selecting a port, the user sees an interactive map with details of routes and distances between the terminal and public transport access and information such as operators, timetables, currency used, prices, distance, duration, stops and access for people with reduced mobility.

Total investment and EU funding

Total investment for the projects “INTERFACE and INTERFACE PLUS” is EUR 4 381 925, of which the EU’s European Regional Development Fund is contributing EUR 3 510 695 from the Operational Programme “South Baltic” for the 2007 to 2013 programming period.

Draft date