Coming to selected cities across Europe, the Connecting Europe Express is one of the highlights of the European Year of Rail 2021. The concept was officially revealed yesterday during the official European Year of Rail kick-off conference – linked to the Portuguese Presidency of the Council of the EU.
A special train will be traveling across the EU as of September. Named “Connecting Europe Express”, it will promote the benefits of rail transport – to passengers, for freight, and the environment. EU’s Transport commissioner, Adina Vălean, states:
“The Connecting Europe Express will be a real, tangible example of the power of rail to connect. At each of the almost 40 stops, events will bring together the rail sector at large, as well as civil society organisations, local and regional authorities, and the wider public, to discuss the benefits of rail, as well as what still has to be done so that rail can become the number one option for passengers and business.”
The project will also be raising awareness for (the EU support of) financing sustainable infrastructure.
A route with almost 40 stops
The promotional visuals show a generic train in blue with many European cities, such as Lisbon, Warsaw, Tallinn, Paris, Lubljana, Bucharest, Brussels, Madrid, Vienna. Brussels and Rome. See this tweet for a reference.
But what about the pandemic? Well, the organisers state that during all local events COVID-19 measures will be taken.
About the rolling stock
As stated by the European Commission, multiple railway companies from the different EU Member States will be providing the rolling stock to configure this train. We will be keeping our eyes open for those interesting and different vehicles that will be used to promote the initiative.
Such is the story of ÖBB’s 1116 276 (see below). Stay tuned for updates and while you’re at it, why not subscribe to our Expert service to get the full picture or – better yet – win a free one!