SLOVENIA: Passenger services have resumed on the Ljubljana – Kočevje line after a gap of nearly 50 years, following the completion of a €100m rehabilitation project to facilitate the operation of services to and from the capital
The first Kočevje-bound passenger train since 1971 departed from Ljubljana station at 12.08 on January 3. ‘I think that after 50 years the renovation and modernisation of the Kočevje line is very important for the Ribnica and Kočevje areas’, Minister of Infrastructure Jernej Vrtovec said during the journey.
The 68 km Ljubljana – Grosuplje – Kočevje line was opened in 1893 to provide access to coal mines in the Bela Krajina region. Passenger traffic began to decline sharply after the modernisation of the Ljubljana – Kočevje road, and passenger trains were cut back to Veliko Lašče from July 1968, Dobrepolje in 1969, and discontinued after 1970.
Modernisation began in 2008, and the first freight train arrived in Kočevje over the upgraded route on 12 April 2019.