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Old December 22nd, 2012, 02:16 PM   #1581
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Seems like an accident waiting to happen...
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Old December 22nd, 2012, 03:48 PM   #1582
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Seems like an accident waiting to happen...
That railway crossing was closed in 2010. Replaced by a tunnel for pedestrians. Cars have to take a 4 km detour now.
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Old December 23rd, 2012, 04:16 PM   #1583
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Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
Making Germany a bit more Berlin-centered wouldn't be a bad thing, though that would go far beyond transportation (it would involve pulling the financial institutions from Frankfurt to Berlin, for instance)
If you argue for a center, then this shouldn't be Berlin as its lying far too remotely. This center would rather be Frankfurt as it's in the demographic and geographic center of not only Germany, but Central Europe as well. Its Metro Area counts more inhabitants with a higher population density than Berlin's; Mannheim and the Metro Areas of Stuttgart and Rhine-Ruhr are not far away. And naturally (the division of Germany after WWII only played a minor role) Frankfurt had become one of Germany's economic powerhouses and most densely populated areas, the financial center and most important traffic junction (FRA Airport, Frankfurter Kreuz and the most important railway station for long distance travel).

But I agree with you that the German approach to HSL lines with a stop every 20km in rather small towns and building unconnected lines here and there is absolutely nonsense. At first, Germany should concentrate all HSR spending on the corridors Hamburg - Hannover - Frankfurt - Basel and Cologne - Frankfurt - Stuttgart - Munich, with regular stops only in these mentioned cities, and bypasses around all other cities. So that some trains running on the HSL tracks can still stop in the smaller cities while through trains can bypass them without having to slow down.
For some cities it might even make sense to build a new station at the HSR line (ideally where there are already other tracks so that connections to other regional trains are possible) as stopping at the old central station would lose too much time - Ulm would be such an example.

Last edited by Rohne; December 23rd, 2012 at 04:22 PM.
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Old December 23rd, 2012, 08:11 PM   #1584
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Ulm would be such an example.
Actually, the prime examples would be precisely those cities mentioned as primary stops by you: Frankfurt, Stuttgart, Munich.

I'd also dispute whether Hanover is really worth the 8 minutes a stop would cost a 300 km/h ICE.

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Frankfurt had become one of Germany's economic powerhouses
Frankfurt is more like the London of Germany in an economic regard...

The geographic center of Germany is near Kassel btw. The geographic center of the economically relevant areas around Germany is somewhere around Mannheim.
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Old December 25th, 2012, 11:35 AM   #1585
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Actually, the prime examples would be precisely those cities mentioned as primary stops by you: Frankfurt, Stuttgart, Munich.
Yeah, let's start trains Freiburg - Kiel, stopping in every small town like Kassel, Göttingen etc, but not in Frankfurt, Hannover and Hamburg

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The geographic center of Germany is near Kassel btw. The geographic center of the economically relevant areas around Germany is somewhere around Mannheim.
Both are somewhat in the neighborhood of Frankfurt. As there are different calculating methods, geographic centers aren't single points but rather regions, and Frankfurt's definitely located in those.
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Old December 27th, 2012, 07:52 PM   #1586
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There were plans for two other "21" projects in the 90ies for Frankfurt and Munich (pretty similar to Stuttgart). They were abandoned because of financial issues though.
I guess that Stuttgart 21 really only makes sense in combination with HSL Stuttgart-Ulm. The main reason for the Leipzig tunnel is not to speed up IC(E)s but to create an integrated S-Bahn Leipzig/Halle.
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i think the frankfurt21 project was way too large-scaled (like stuttgart21), while a "small" solution as pointed out by wilhelm275 would still be very useful and resembles more or less the proposed "kombibahnhof"-solution of stuttgart. additionally a bypass of hanau and finally a highspeedline to fulda (mottgers-spange) would be of great advantage and probably by far more beneficial than stuttgart21 or even the new berlin-munich line.
Yep! I know there were a lot of "21s", but I use to imagine rail infrastructures less scenic and more effective
My idea about Frankfurt is much simpler that F-21, as long as a 4 km tunnel under a city center can be defined "simple"...
No frills, just using the same route of today with the Riedbahn (or its future HS evolution) entering via F-Stadion, Niederrad, then going underground roughly in the same spot as the S-Bahn tunnel does.
A 4 (or 6) track station just under the existing Hbf, not enormous but well integrated with the above platforms; then a 2 track tunnel up to just past F-Ost.

From F-Ost you can set up an evolution in time of the corridor:
1) dedicated 2 tracks at least up to Hanau-Wilhelmsbad
2) Hanau bypass along the A66 up to Hanuer Kreuz
3) Completing the line to Fulda (ABS, Mottgers-Spange or whatever)
4) NBS to Nantenbach
EDIT, I forgot: 5) And finally a new Würzburg - Nürnberg line...

This would pretty much complete the "fast X" München - Köln and Basel - Hamburg; together with the existing lines everything would be done, except for the poor Rurh - Hamburg corridor which seems to be forgotten by God himself...

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Originally Posted by Rohne View Post
Yeah, let's start trains Freiburg - Kiel, stopping in every small town like Kassel, Göttingen etc, but not in Frankfurt, Hannover and Hamburg
I think he meant that today most of the time gained on fast lines is wasted with slow access to the cities; and that is true for those he mentioned.


In fact my idea about Frankfurt is based on the same concept: it's stupid to think and build large-scale HSLs while entering the cities is still an agony. FIRST develop better acces, then speed up the lines.

I'm surprised to read here so much "We want superfast lines" in disregards of nodes, it seems an Italian infrastructure forum
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Last edited by Wilhem275; December 29th, 2012 at 10:08 PM. Reason: Misspelling
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Old December 28th, 2012, 07:11 AM   #1587
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Making Germany a bit more Berlin-centered wouldn't be a bad thing, though that would go far beyond transportation (it would involve pulling the financial institutions from Frankfurt to Berlin, for instance)
Actually from a transportation point of view having a polycentric country is far more efficient. In countries where everything is centralised in the Capital you have a lot of full trains running in one direction during the peak hour whereas in the other direction they will be empty. It's far more profitable for the railway if the peak hour traffic means trains are well loaded in both directions.
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Old December 28th, 2012, 10:49 AM   #1588
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Originally Posted by K_ View Post
Actually from a transportation point of view having a polycentric country is far more efficient. In countries where everything is centralised in the Capital you have a lot of full trains running in one direction during the peak hour whereas in the other direction they will be empty. It's far more profitable for the railway if the peak hour traffic means trains are well loaded in both directions.
Don't you think this argument is only relevant for commuter traffic? People aren't commuting between Paris and Marseille...
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Old December 28th, 2012, 12:17 PM   #1589
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Don't you think this argument is only relevant for commuter traffic? People aren't commuting between Paris and Marseille...
This isn't just about commuting to jobs. Weekend traffic, and business traffic to/from Paris is highly directional, depending on time of day, and which day of the week it is, with trains lightly loaded in the oposite direction, or just parked until the flow reverses. It is not very efficient. One of the consequences is that SNCF needs higher average loadings to break even than DB does.
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Old December 28th, 2012, 06:58 PM   #1590
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Originally Posted by Wilhem275 View Post
No frills, just using the same route of today with the Riedbahn (or its future HS evolution) entering via F-Stadion, Niederrad, then going underground roughly in the same spot as the S-Bahn tunnel does.
A 4 (or 6) track station just under the existing Hbf, not enormous but well integrated with the above platforms; then a 2 track tunnel up to just past F-Ost.
As Frankfurt Hbf is over-congested with all kinds of traffic, priority is on reorganizing the whole apron as well as widening Frankfurt-Süd - Hbf from 2 to 4, and Stadion - Hbf from 4 to 6 tracks. Hbf's tracks 1 to 6 will then be dedicated to long distance traffic (those trains will also use the 2 new tracks to Stadion).
Besides the fact that ICEs shall use the southern line to Hanau (instead of the northern via F-Ost, but that shouldn't be too much of an issue for an eventual short NBS to the HSLs to Würzburg/Fulda bypassing Hanau), the only major difference to your proposal is, that long distance trains still use the surface instead of a tunnel. An additional tunnel for long distance trains isn't ruled out in the long term but time savings won't be much more than 2 minutes.

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From F-Ost you can set up an evolution in time of the corridor:
1) dedicated 2 tracks at least up to Hanau-Wilhelmsbad
2) Hanau bypass along the A66 up to Hanuer Kreuz
3) Completing the line to Fulda (ABS, Mottgers-Spange or whatever)
4) NBS to Nantenbach
EDIT, I forgot: 5) And finally a new Würzburg - Nürnberg line...
Those would surely help a lot. Yet, nothing is planned by now, there's not even a decision whether to plan the Mottgers-Spange or upgrade Hanau-Fulda to 4 tracks or whatever. But it doesn't have anything to do with Frankfurt main station itself.
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Old December 29th, 2012, 10:01 PM   #1591
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wasn`t the part of reorganizing the apron and more tracks from stadion and frankfurt-süd to HBF part of the frankfurt+ program (including also a new bridge over the main)?
why should the ICEs use the southern line to hanau instead of the northern line which looks less curved, doesn`t go directly through a city (offenbach) and is planned for a 4track upgrade and a speedlimit of 200km/h afaik? (ok, it is about 1km longer than the southern line, but that should not be an object)
i also doubt that the tunnel hbf-ffm ost would save only 2minutes if trains could speed up to 200kmh directly at hbf and hold that speed at least until hanau instead of taking the curvy route from hbf through sachsenhausen. of course it would be really expansive (not only the tunnel but also the additional underground-station at hbf) and also i read somewhere that the commerzbank tower would rule out such a tunnel as its foundations would block the route, but i suppose one could find another route for the tunnel (again that`s a matter of costs..).
if you take a look at the current ice-network you can see that highspeed routes from frankfurt to fulda and frankfurt-mannheim should clearly have a higher priority than nürnberg-erfurt or stuttgart-ulm.. also bypassing mannheim with 1or2 lines should not hurt the metropolitan region that much. it is absurd that DB now plans frankfurt-mannheim not even as a highspeed-route..
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Old December 30th, 2012, 06:27 PM   #1592
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Originally Posted by derUlukai View Post
wasn`t the part of reorganizing the apron and more tracks from stadion and frankfurt-süd to HBF part of the frankfurt+ program (including also a new bridge over the main)?
Yes, "Frankfurt Rhein/Main Plus" is the name of the program.
More to be found in this pdf (1,6MB).

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why should the ICEs use the southern line to hanau instead of the northern line which looks less curved, doesn`t go directly through a city (offenbach) and is planned for a 4track upgrade and a speedlimit of 200km/h afaik? (ok, it is about 1km longer than the southern line, but that should not be an object)
The northern line is 1,5km longer and the speedlimit is not higher than on the southern line (160kph max, mostly less) and the curve east of Südbahnhof where southern and northern lines merge is extremely narrow allowing only slow speeds. In the meantime - we're talking of decades here - until a tunnel to Hbf is built, all trains from the northern line would have to slow down there. Because of the Main Triangle this curve cannot be accelerated. The 2 additional tracks planned along the northern line are for the S-Bahn only. Currently there aren't any S-Bahn trains using the northern line, which instead is (and will be) heavily used by freight traffic.
There will also be a reorganisation of the tracks east of Südbahnhof (some plans can be found here). The tracks from the southern line, which will be used by long distance and fast regional trains, will directly continue to the future long distance platforms 1 to 6 of Hbf, while the tracks from the northern line are directly continuing as the tracks for slow regional trains to the northern part of Hbf and for freight trains to Louisa. Thus, long distance trains using the northern line would have to switch tracks anywhere between Südbahnhof and Hauptbahnhof, meaning less capacity as no parallel passages would be possible then.
So it really makes sense to concentrate long distance trains on the southern line until a completely new line to Hanau with an acceptable speed limit of above 200kph is built.

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i also doubt that the tunnel hbf-ffm ost would save only 2minutes if trains could speed up to 200kmh directly at hbf and hold that speed at least until hanau instead of taking the curvy route from hbf through sachsenhausen.
A tunnel would make FrankfurtHbf - FrankfurtOst ~2km shorter (roughly 5 vs 7km), but trains also need time and distance to brake or accelerate, so the difference of travel speed and time savings on such a short stretch is rather low. Taking into account the high costs, priority for such a project naturally can't be very high, especially as there are still tens or hundreds of billions of euros needed for Germany to build an acceptable high speed network.

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if you take a look at the current ice-network you can see that highspeed routes from frankfurt to fulda and frankfurt-mannheim should clearly have a higher priority than nürnberg-erfurt or stuttgart-ulm.. also bypassing mannheim with 1or2 lines should not hurt the metropolitan region that much. it is absurd that DB now plans frankfurt-mannheim not even as a highspeed-route..
I completely agree with you, but... this is Germany...
Frankfurt-Mannheim is still planned for 300kph, but without Mannheim bypass. I don't know which concept they currently have for Darmstadt, as it changes every few weeks. Best would be not to stop in Darmstadt at all, the hourly ICs between (Hamburg-Kassel-)Frankfurt and Heidelberg(-Stuttgart-Munich-Austria) are enough of long distance traffic for a rather small city which is located on the very short stretch between Frankfurt and Mannheim directly neighboring the 2 million Frankfurt Urban Area.
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Old December 30th, 2012, 06:39 PM   #1593
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ok, thanks for clerification. but one point on the regional-trains on the north-route concept is still unclear to me, as afaik those regional-trains (nearly?) all stop in offenbach, which can`t be served on the north-route. does this mean that offenbach will be served only by s-bahn in the future?
also, where could a completely new (highspeed) line frankfurt-hanau be built?
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Old December 30th, 2012, 06:46 PM   #1594
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Thanks for the document - it gives a nice overview of the plans.
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Old December 30th, 2012, 11:19 PM   #1595
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On Frankfurt-Mannheim-HSR:

The most important thing is that the Rhein-Main-Region is suffocating from all the rail-freight-traffic!
Action is needed, and so far the HSR project has been the only "saviour" available.

-Currently the project has gotten in disfavour at the ministry of transport, because it is highly doubted that this project would ease the rail-freight problem, let alone solving it. It has been degraded in priority.


-Under these circumstances officials from Darmstadt and the Southern-Hesse Region (this region desperately needs this project to be connected to the ICE-network at all) have conducted another concept to resolve the issue:

Build the new track for freight rail only!
This would relieve the two existing Frankfurt-Mannheim corridors, and you could lead the ICE via the existing corridor via Darmstadt (after giving it an upgrade).
That new track could be built with few trouble, since Darmstadt and Mannheim would be passed.
This concept would actually solve all the problems at once.


-Now the ministry of transport has commissioned a study to ultimately find out about the gain of a passenger-track vs. a freight-track.
The result of this study is still awaited, and is the missing link to all the uncertainty.


-In parallel the head of Deutsche Bahn still insist on building the project as it has been - as a HSR.
Although he said that he is waiting for the result of the study as well, and would act according to it.
In the same context he also repeated that the DB would be obliged to stop in Darmstadt and Mannheim and that there would be nothing to discuss about.



Sources in German; by the newspaper of southern Hesse, that is following the events very closely:

http://www.echo-online.de/region/sue...t24719,2597081
http://www.echo-online.de/region/dar...rt1231,2822685
http://www.echo-online.de/region/dar...rt1231,2873126
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Old December 31st, 2012, 01:35 AM   #1596
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Build the new track for freight rail only!
This would relieve the two existing Frankfurt-Mannheim corridors, and you could lead the ICE via the existing corridor via Darmstadt (after giving it an upgrade).
That new track could be built with few trouble, since Darmstadt and Mannheim would be passed.
This concept would actually solve all the problems at once.
No, it wouldn't as high-speed trains would still run on ridiculously slow tracks.
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Old December 31st, 2012, 10:21 AM   #1597
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No, it wouldn't as high-speed trains would still run on ridiculously slow tracks.
So?

The ICE speeding with 300 kph is not really a priority here.

1) Relieve the freight burden
2) Dont have freight trains run through densely populated area (at nights)
3) Close the gap frankfurt-Mannheim
4) Find a way to stop in Darmstadt and Mannheim also
5) Make an investment that brings a financial gain.

These are the major priorities!
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Old December 31st, 2012, 03:18 PM   #1598
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Seems that people are talking at cross purposes...

The local towns want better local service over a distance of 70km.

DB wants a high speed line that will eventually become part of a Frankfurt - France axis in a European context.

Couldn't they build the HSR but send freight that way at night?
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Old December 31st, 2012, 03:28 PM   #1599
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Freight is not on the move only at night
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Old December 31st, 2012, 03:37 PM   #1600
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No, but it's less of a problem going through towns in the day.
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