EIB is lending €40m to Poland’s rail infrastructure manager PKP PLK to fund upgrading of track and platforms at Siedlce, Lukow and Miedzyrzec Podlaski and signalling modernisation on 78 km between Siedlce and Biala Podlaska. By the end of 2015 line speeds will be raised to 160 km/h for passenger trains and 120 km/h for freight.

Transport authorities in Thüringen and Niedersachsen have selected incumbent DB Regio to operate Dieselnetz Niedersachsen-Südost services totalling around 3·7 million train-km/year for 15 years from December 2014.

HSH Nordbank is lead arranger for the financing of the UK’s £1·6bn Thameslink train procurement PPP, committing 7·5% of the commercial term loan financing.

On July 5 the national railways of Russia, Slovakia, Austria and Ukraine agreed that their Breitspur Planungsgesellschaft joint venture would call tenders shortly for a detailed technical and environmental study into the planned Košice – Wien 1 520 mm gauge line.

The German Land of Thüringen is to directly award incumbent Harzer Schmalspurbahnen the contract to operate Nordhausen – Ilfeld local services between March 2015 and December 2020.

The European Commission has begun public consultation on ‘Effective Reduction of Noise Generated by Rail Freight Wagons in the European Union’, seeking views on the extent of the problem, assessment of existing measures, and the relevance and impact of proposed options.

RFF has shortlisted four bidders for a contract to design, build, finance and maintain the Montpellier-Sud de France station due to open at the end of 2017 with the Nîmes - Montpellier bypass. A preferred bidder is due to be selected during the second quarter of 2014 for contract signature to follow in the summer of that year.