Denmark targets one-hour rail times between five major cities

Minister for transport Benny Engelbrecht has targeted rail journey times of no more than one hour between Denmark’s five largest cities.

It could take no more than one hour to travel by train from Aalborg to Aarhus; Aarhus to Odense; Odense to Esbjerg; and Odense to Copenhagen, should the plan become reality.

A 2014 plan to cut journey times and make other improvements to the rail network, Togfonden, was halted earlier this year after it lost parliamentary support.

But the change in government after last month’s general election could see the plan back on track, Ritzau writes.

Engelbrecht said he will meet with parties that supported the original plan – the Social Liberals, Socialist People’s Party and Red Green Alliance – at an as-yet unspecified date following the summer recess to discuss reinstating the Togfonden plan.

The original plan included a provision to ensure one-hour journey times between Copenhagen, Odense, Aarhus, Aalborg and Esbjerg, the five largest cities in Denmark which are also each located in a different region of the country: the islands of Zealand and Funen and the central, northern and western parts of Jutland.

“It is clear that there are some unresolved things in phase two (of the plan), whereby the signatories must decide how they are to be managed,” Engelbrecht said.

“The aims of (the plan) are safer and more stable operation, on-time operation and not least faster transport between regions of the country,” he added.

“The exact details of how we do things are up to the parties who are part of the agreement,” he added.

Another aspect of the Togfonden agreement is the implementation of a planned line between the city of Vejle and Billund, where Denmark’s second-largest airport is located.