Vienna-Bratislava in 40 minutes, Austrian railway company promises

They have one condition. Slovakia should repair bridges from the time of Emperor Ferdinand I.

Illustrative stock photoIllustrative stock photo (Source: TASR)

Austrian railway company ÖBB published an ad where they promise to significantly cut the travelling time from Vienna to Bratislava.

They plan to modernise the old north way that leads through Marchegg and Devínska Nová Ves by 2023, allowing the trains to go faster, the Denník N daily reported.

“From Vienna to the state border, trains will travel at 200 kilometres per hour,” Austrians informed in the video published on Facebook.

20 minutes faster

This means that passengers would get from the centre of Bratislava to the centre of Vienna in 40 minutes, although the trains can travel only at 120 kilometres per hour in Slovakia, and even slower in the city.

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Currently, the train takes at least an hour using the southern railways from Petržalka borough, Denník N reported. When taking a bus, it takes an hour and 25 minutes.

The modernisation concerns the historical route through Marchegg, which leads mostly through Austria. It was used in 1848 when the first steam train arrived in Bratislava, at the end of the era of Emperor Ferdinand I. The railway is old, non-electrified and without a second railway in most sections.

ÖBB plans to modernise about 37 kilometres of the railways, investing millions of euros.

In the beginning

The investment would make sense only if the Slovak state-run railway company ŽSR reconstructs several kilometres between Devínska Nová Ves and Austrian borders, according to Denník N.

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The plan has been in the pipeline since 2011. The route from Marchegg to Bratislava running through the Slovak territory leads through several old bridges from the times of Emperor Ferdinand I.

There is, for example, 170-year-old stone bridge above the Morava River that needs to be reconstructed, Denník N reported.

Instead of the originally estimated €4.6 million, the reconstruction may cost about €12 to €13 million. The problem is that Slovakia is still in the preparatory stage. The reconstruction itself should start in the second half of 2021.

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