Friday, March 04, 2016

Tunnel project to link Denmark, Germany gets green light from Danish side

The Danish parliament on Friday approved the construction plan for the Fehmarn Belt tunnel project linking Denmark and Germany.

The 18 km tunnel, which will connect the German island of Fehmarn with the Danish island of Lolland, is expected to open in 2028, according to Danish news agency Ritzau. The tunnel could cut rail travel time between Hamburg and Copenhagen from four-and-a-half to three hours.

Despite delays in the schedule, a majority in the Danish parliament on Friday agreed to proceed with the long-waited project.

Femern A/S, the company charged with the construction of the fixed link, can therefore negotiate with the preferred contractors on four major construction contracts.

"This project is on the right track again. It has been a fantastic effort on all sides. Now there must be full focus on keeping contact with the German authorities," said Danish Transport Minister Hans Christian Schmidt.

Construction work on the project can be initiated after the German environmental approval is given.

The budget for the construction is 52.6 billion Danish kroner (7.74 billion US dollars) and the EU Commission has confirmed that Denmark will get 4.4 billion kroner in support for the project.

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