hidden europe 50

Connecting Communities: Cross-Border Rail Links

by Nicky Gardner


A new European Union initiative offers funds to help plug gaps in Europe's rail network. It will only be effective if grants to support new infrastructure are accompanied by a strict requirement to run passenger trains on the new routes.

Tucked away in a European Commission announcement on 13 October 2016 was a windfall for local cross-border rail services in Europe. Of the 1.9 billion euros being allocated to key European transport projects, the sum of €190m is being earmarked to plug some of the missing cross-border links in Europe’s transport network. EU Commissioner for Transport Violeta Bulc emphasised the need to “keep countries and regions united.” German MEP Michael Cramer, who chairs the Transport and Tourism Committee of the European Parliament, welcomed the initiative “to scale up support for smaller cross-border projects and in particular railway connections.”

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