CZECH REPUBLIC: Infrastructure manager SŽDC has appointed a joint venture of Mott MacDonald and Sudop Praha to undertake studies for a proposed be 200 to 350 km/h cross-border line connecting Litoměřice and Ústí nad Labem with Dresden in Germany.

The electrified route through the Krušné hory/Erzgebirge mountains would bypass the congested existing line along the River Elbe, offering reduced journey times and a smaller environmental footprint.

The joint venture is to undertake geotechnical investigations and environmental impact assessments for the various route options, and preparatory works for the design of major bridges and tunnels. A preliminary economic evaluation, implementation plan and project publicity will be also provided by the end of the year.

‘This project is a major step into the new age for the Czech Republic’s railway infrastructure’, said Mott MacDonald Project Director Tomáš Parák on April 20. ‘As well as providing a direct link between Dresden and Praha, the new railway line is important as it will provide capacity enhancement for international traffic from the north of Europe and Baltic Sea ports to southern European countries. By developing a modern cross-border connection, it will strengthen the nation’s position in Europe.’