Source: Blic | Tuesday, 23.06.2020.| 09:15
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From Belgrade to Vienna in two hours? – New high-speed train project to connect all Europe, one line to go through Serbia with speed up to 350 km/h

Illustration (Photo: potowizard/
If ultra-rapid train lines projects, proposed by the esteemed Vienna Institute for Economic Studies, was to be realized, the updated railway network would connect all European regions. One of the four proposed lines would include Serbia too.

Namely, the new European train network, to be established as part of a recovery programme from the Covid-19 crisis, should achieve average speed in the range of 250-350 km/h, writes the daily Blic. For instance, the trip from Belgrade to Berlin, 1250 km in distance, could take four hours by train, the trip to Vienna would last around two hours, while the trip to the Greek coast, specifically Thessaloniki would only require 15 min more.

Vienna Institute document proposes that the network could be established over the period of the 2020s.

Total of 448 of rail lines would pass through Serbia, which would cost EUR 14.9 mil. Our country would be on the Berlin-Nicosia line with a loop between Sofia and Vienna. This route would run from Germany through Central Europe – Czech Republic, Austria, Hungary then further through Serbia, Romania, Bulgaria and North Macedonia and Greece with a ferry-based link to Cyprus.

In the opposite direction the line would lead through Albania, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and Slovenia which would basically connect all of Western Balkans.

A total of 1564 km of railway lines is supposed to go through the six countries of our region mentioned, which would require around EUR 1.1 billion in costs. After Serbia the longest railway route would pass through B&H – 340 km in length, and is the second most expensive to build – Eur 10.06 billion.

The new European ultra-rapid train (URT) network would include four railway lines which would connect all EU capitals and capitals of the (potential) candidate countries from Western Balkans to become EU member states.

The four proposed lines are as follows:
– green line : Paris to Dublin - taking the Brest-Cork ferry then running from Cork to Dublin;
– red line: Lisbon to Helsinki , with a loop in the Ruhr region in Germany;
– blue line :Brussels to Valetta, connecting north and south Europe;
– brown line: Berlin to Nicosia - with a ferry-based sea link between Piraeus and Paphos and a loop between Vienna and Sofia.

Faster trains, less air pollution

The average on the lines would be increased to between 250 and 350 km/h, in contrast to the current speed which reaches way below 200 km/h on some routes,

This means that passenger would only need four hours to get from Paris to Berlin making air travel for a large part of the intra-European passenger transport obsolete. The document states that the project has the potential to reduce global commercial aviation CO2 emissions by about 4-5 percent whereas rail cargo capacities would be increased .

The new URT network should be a new double-track high-speed railway system that is complementary to the existing network and where suitable, existing lines could be adapted.

The estimated cost for 18,250 of rail lines in this network is EUR 1.1 trillion or around EUR 60 billion per kilometer.

The brown line from Berlin to Nicosia which includes Serbia would be 5700 km long with a total cost of EUR 249 billion.
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