Schwechat Express go ahead
AUSTRIAN Federal Railways has reached agreement with the operators of Wien Schwechat international airport to launch a dedicated rail service. This paves the way for the long-planned renovation of Wien Mitte station, which is due to be completed by the end of 2003.
A new City Air Terminal will be built at the station with 10 check-in desks. Starting on December 14 2003, the Airport Express will run to and from the airport every 30 min, offering a journey time of 16 min. The single fare will be €8, compared to €2·80 on the S7 suburban trains, which will continue to operate.
The new trains are to be based on ÖBB's existing City Express double-deck trainsets, accommodating 150 passengers, plus luggage. The Airport Express will run from 05.30 to 00.00 each day, with the present bus link continuing to operate during the night hours.
ÖBB Chairman Ferdinand Schmidt estimates that the new service will attract around 10% of airport users within the first year, despite the higher fare which he says is in line with market prices. Wien Airport Board Chairman Gerhard Schmid says the express service 'will bring the airport into the city'.