Basel's airport could finally have its own train connection by 2030
Rail connections from EuroAirport Basel Mulhouse Freiburg could be made available as soon as 2030, despite many years of setbacks in discussions around the project. Currently, the airport is only accessible by three methods of transportation - by driving, taking a bus or a taxi.
Previously, the project was set to be ready by 2028
According to new documents released as part of a public hearing, the new rail connection from the airport to the city of Basel will not be completed before 2030, even though the project to link the airport to wider public transport was originally planned to be finished by 2028.
From October 11 to November 9, 2021, plans for the project are open for public comment, after which the plans will be declared as a "non-profit project."
Managing Director of Regio Basiliensis, Manuel Friesecke, said that he expects residents, civil society groups and businesses will be especially vocal during the public hearing, but remains optimistic that the plans will not be diverted too much by the comments made.
Plans for Basel airport to have a train stop are not new
While the project is not likely to be finished before 2030, the idea of having a railway line to connect the airport in Basel with the rest of the Swiss rail network is not novel. In fact, discussions have been taking place to make the train connection a reality for more than 70 years.
The plans have struggled to gain real traction due to opposition from various sides, particularly about how the train line should be constructed and where the tracks should be placed. One of the most problematic disputes was the splitting of the Technoport development area between the airport and Saint-Louis, which was resolved by the creation of a 170-metre long viaduct under revised plans.
Unfortunately, the new solution does not come cheap - it is expected to add an extra cost of 18 million euros, with the total construction cost now totalling 340 million euros. According to the financing plan, the government of Switzerland will contribute around 90,5 million euros to get the plan up and running in time for 2030.