Austrian government gives green light to Brenner Base Tunnel

By News Editor / Updated: 01 Aug 2014
The Austrian government approved the launch of the works on the Brenner Base Tunnel. European Commission Vice -President Siim Kallas, responsible for transport, and Pat Cox, the European Coordinator responsible for the Brenner Corridor as the centrepiece of Priority Project No 1 Berlin -Palermo, welcomed the Austrian decision as an important step forward in realising the necessary capacity eventually to achieve the goal of a modal shift from road to rail in the sensitive alpine region.
The Austrian government approved the launch of the works on the Brenner Base Tunnel. European Commission Vice -President Siim Kallas, responsible for transport, and Pat Cox, the European Coordinator responsible for the Brenner Corridor as the centrepiece of Priority Project No 1 Berlin -Palermo, welcomed the Austrian decision as an important step forward in realising the necessary capacity eventually to achieve the goal of a modal shift from road to rail in the sensitive alpine region.

The Austrian decision to start the works on the Brenner Base Tunnel is part of the approval of the framework programme 2011 -2016 of the Austrian Railways (ÖBB Rahmenplan). The works on the Brenner Base Tunnel will start this year. Until 2016, Austria will invest approximately €1,3 billion in the tunnel infrastructure. The EU foresees investing additionally almost €1 billion in the Brenner Corridor by end 2013. This is by far the highest TEN-T contribution of all 30 EU Priority Projects.

Excavation works will start in 2011 from Innsbruck in the north and Fortezza in the south. The works on the central part of the tunnel between Ahrental and Trens will start in 2016.

Vice-President Kallas said: We welcome the decision of the Austrian government. It marks an important step forward. In this economically difficult situation the achievement of a sustainable European transport policy is more important than ever. The Brenner Base Tunnel will deliver a crucial contribution to the modal shift from road to rail and to the protection of the sensitive Alpine environment.

Mr Cox, former President of the European Parliament, added: Today's decision reflects the progress that has been made on both sides, by Austria and Italy, in recent months on this important TEN-T priority project. It is a tribute to all those who have worked with such commitment to ensure the realisation of one of Europe’s major f uture rail corridors. I look forward to driving the project ahead in the coming months. I attach great importance to good cooperation between all the stakeholders involved this project, national, regional and infrastructural. As successor to the late Karel Van Miert I see my main role as fostering and enhancing this cooperation . I would also like to use this opportunity to pay tribute to Mr Van Miert, who has been instrumental in keeping this complex process moving forward at every stage.

Source: DG Mobility and Transport Newsletter

Related information: http://tentea.ec.europa.eu/en/ten-t_projects/ten-t_projects_by_country/multi_country/2007-eu-01180-p.htm
Country: 
Austria
Topic: 
Traffic and demand management