The Dutch province of Groningen and Arriva signed a memorandum on March 14 to introduce a half-hourly train service to Veendam from April 2010 (RG 10.07 p600). Since the original Veendam station is used by the preserved STAR line, a new station will be built there. Arriva intends to order three more Stadler trains at a cost of €12m.
Rheinland-Pfalz Nord transport authority has awarded Rhenus Veniro a 20-year contract to operate the 14 km line between Boppard in the Rhine valley and Emmelshausen from December 2009. A €7m order has been placed with Stadler for three RS1 Regio-Shuttle diesel railcars, which will be specially modified for the Hunsrückbahn's exceptional gradients of up to 5·9%.
The German government, DB, industry association VDB and scientific partners have launched a three-year 'Quiet train on real track' (LZarG) project to develop simple and economically feasible ways of cutting noise. The project will investigate the issues of wheel/rail contact, wheel vibrations, sound radiation and acoustic optimisation of the track.