The project has been talked about for thirty years; once again its economics have not worked out.
The German transport ministry refuses to approve a major investment to electrify the line between Nuremberg and Marktredwitz. This would bring the possibility of electric trains from Prague via Cheb to Bavaria’s second largest city. The project has been talked about for over 30 years.
Another rejection has been highlighted by the German passenger union Pro Bahn. It pointed out that the electrification project has been in the federal investment plan since 1992. “We are dismayed by the latest developments in this investment,” Pro Bahn said. According to the German Ministry of Transport, the investment has not yet shown sufficient benefits. The ministry expects a further review of its decision at the end of next year.
The ministry’s decision has drawn heavy criticism from local politicians, who point to proclamations of a move away from diesel trains and the line’s potential for better connections between Germany and the Czech Republic. The electrification was to include line modernization and upgrade. It has long been pointed out by rail freight operators that crossings to Germany lack capacity. The connection to Nuremberg is so slow that Deutsche Bahn has introduced direct buses between Prague and Nuremberg instead.
Edited and translated by Lucie Trávníčková.