The international project “Transregio” of the St. Pölten University of Applied Sciences in collaboration with Czech research institutes examines how capacity shortages on the railway line from Brno to Vienna can be overcome.
The project evaluates the effects which a possible expansion of capacity and a closure of the gaps might have on society, the region and the environment. In addition, the project team works on developing a basis for future investment decisions.
Regional Gap Closure with Trans-Regional Significance
Capacity shortages in rail traffic are a transnational problem in the region of the Austrian-Czech border. Some routes have already reached their limit. The project “Transregio” investigates the consequences of possible measures to close the gaps and expand the capacities between Czech and Austrian railway networks.
“Although a possible gap closure is regional, it is of international importance since the network forms part of the Baltic-Adriatic Corridor and the Orient / East-Med Corridor which is the connection to Southeastern Europe and the countries of the Eastern Mediterranean. The project provides an opportunity to explore alternative connections between Southern Moravia and Lower Austria which are both located at the intersection of major European railways. The region will continue to be fully integrated into one of the most important traffic corridors”, explains Otfried Knoll, Head of the Department of Rail Technology and Mobility at the St. Pölten UAS.
Study as Investment Basis
The study will investigate the rail network Brno – Hevlin – Laa an der Thaya – Wolkersdorf – Vienna in connection with the reconstruction of the railway border crossing Laa an der Thaya – Hevlin. The study assesses a number of different ways to increase the capacity and puts a focus on the transregional impact in technical, operational, economic, socio-economic and ecological terms. The project also researches an alternative route to the heavily used corridor Brno – Breclav – Vienna.
“The aim of the cross-border study is to issue recommendations for investments in regard to socio-economic efficiency, environmental impacts and risks concerning the execution. The results should serve as the basis for the decision-making process for national infrastructure financing and construction committees”, says Knoll.
The project is financed by the programme INTERREG V-A Austria – Czech Republic, the European Union, or rather the European Regional Development Fund, and runs until May 2021. Partners are the Centrum Dopravniho Vyzkumu (Transport Research Centre Brno, project lead), the St. Pölten UAS, Department of Railway Technology and Mobility as well as the Brno University of Technology, Faculty for Construction, Institute of Railway Construction. All relevant stakeholders in the Czech Republic and Austria are involved in the processing of the project. Project name: Programm Interreg V-A AT-CZ; Projekt ATCZ158 Transregio.