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German Industry News December 2019

Posted by: Matt Rafter
Industry News

Berlin airport’s €675m rail link coming October 2020

German Rail (DB) has announced that it is ready to open its €675 million rail link to the German capital’s Berlin Brandenburg Airport.

The news follows November’s announcement by the airport’s CEO Mr Engelbert Lütke Daldrup that the airport will open on 31st October 2020.

DB built 18.5km of new line for long-distance and regional service and 8.6km of track to extend the S-Bahn from Schönefeld Airport to Berlin Brandenburg Airport. The airport station has four tracks with 405m-long platforms for regional and long-distance trains and two tracks with a 152.5m-long platform for the S-Bahn.

The airport project was delayed by numerous problems since 2010. Since 2011, DB has had to continuously monitor and maintain the new facilities for safe operation and has been running empty trains to keep the tunnels and station ventilated. 

Mr Alexander Kaczmarek, DB’s authorised representative for the State of Berlin, said: “We had already completed our tracks and platform facilities in time for the original scheduled opening date in October 2011 and we will be ready again when the flights begin.”

Before flights commence, a joint exercise is planned in April 2020 for the station and airport terminal involving 700 volunteers. 

Journey times by rail to the centre of Berlin will be 35 minutes for Airport Express services and 51 minutes by S-Bahn. However, the Airport Express journey time will be reduced to 20 minutes when DB completes a project to lay two additional tracks for regional and long-distance trains alongside the existing S-Bahn tracks on the Dresden main line.

Preliminary work on the Dresden line scheme began in October 2017 on sections (Abschnitt on the map) 1, 2 and 4 of the project, with the official start of the main construction work beginning in February 2019. Plans for section 3 through Mahlow and Blankenfelde were approved in August 2019.

Since demand has increased compared with original forecast of 125,000 passengers in 2012, DB says signalling upgrades to increase efficiency are planned in time for the completion of the Dresden line project. Full story.

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