Reach BER in 20 minutes from the Berlin main train station: Start of construction for the "Dresdner Bahn" in south Berlin

Official start of construction for the Dresdner Bahn | © Deutsche Bahn AG

Official start of construction for the Dresdner Bahn | © Deutsche Bahn AG

Soundproof wall in Berlin Lichtenrade | © Deutsche Bahn AG

Soundproof wall in Berlin Lichtenrade | © Deutsche Bahn AG

A symbolic kick-off for construction of the Berlin-Dresden railway was held today as the last element of a sound insulating wall was lifted into place at the Wolziger Zeile track crossing in Berlin-Lichtenrade.

Enak Ferlemann, Parliamentary Undersecretary at the Federal Ministry of Traffic and Digital Infrastructure, representative of the states of Berlin, Brandenburg and Saxony and EU Coordinator for the “Orient/Eastern Mediterranean” TEN-V core network corridor Mathieu Grosch kicked off the major project, important both in the region and internationally, alongside DB Chair of Infrastructure Ronald Pofalla. Two new, electrified mainline tracks will be constructed between Berlin Südkreuz and Blankenfelde by December 2025, including a connecting curve to the Berlin outer ring, for a total of round 560 million euros. BER airport will be accessible from central Berlin via the “Dresdner Bahn” (Berlin-Dresden railway) in 20 minutes. The line will also shorten travel times between Berlin, Dresden and Prague.

Enak Ferlemann: “The Berlin-Dresden railway will move Berliners to BER airport quickly in the future. The route is also important far beyond the capital city region as a high-performing, environmentally friendly rail line between Berlin, Dresden and Prague. In short: By expanding this track section with a high-performing line, we are achieving the highest possible impact for the railway network - while providing effective noise protection to residents.”

Ronald Pofalla, DB Chair of Infrastructure: “We’ve waited a long time for this day. Finally, we can start reconstruction of the Berlin-Dresden railway. This connection is important for BER airport, for faster travel times to Dresden and Prague, and for relieving the route from Berlin to Leipzig and Munich. There’s also good news for residents: Anywhere where it is possible, we are already providing noise protection by building sound protection walls along the route.”

Regine Günther, Senator for the Environment, Traffic and Climate Protection in Berlin: “The start of construction for the Berlin-Dresden railway opens up all new prospects for Berlin: I am glad we will be able to travel quickly from Berlin to the BER airport, or to Dresden or Prague in the future in an environmentally way that protects the climate. This important infrastructure project will shorten travel times, and three Berlin train stations will be updated to be more accessible. That makes train travel even more attractive.”

Traffic Minister Kathrin Schneider: “The expansion of the Berlin-Dresden railway is an important milestone for more trains and better service. After it is completed, we will have the capacity for new lines and better travel times on the routes between the BER airport and Cottbus, Eberswalde and Oranienburg. The route is also a gain for Brandenburger Süden, as travel times will also be shorter from there to Berlin.”

Saxon Economic and Traffic Minister Martin Dulig: “I am glad that the expansion of the Berlin-Dresden railway has served as another key milestone on the route between Berlin and Dresden. In the not too distant future, this will reduce travel time between the main train stations of the state and national capitals, as well as to Hamburg, by another ten minutes.”

Mathieu Grosch, Coordinator of TEN projects, European Union: “The expansion of the Berlin-Dresden railway is fully in line with the concept of European traffic corridors, which create better networks between the capitals of EU countries. This is clearly the case here between Berlin, Dresden, Prague, Vienna and Bratislava on the Orient/Eastern Mediterranean core network corridor. However, this construction project also improves local railway transportation and mobility in the urban region, providing a good railway connection to the new Berlin airport. Such projects make a key contribution to modern, multimodal and sustainable traffic planning and benefit many citizens thanks to their many advantages in local and long-distance transportation.”

Preparatory work for construction started in 2017 south of the Lichtenrade train station and on Säntisstraße in Marienfelde. The main construction work started step by step between Marienfelde and the state border with Brandenburg in 2019, including the construction of a new pedestrian underpass under Wolziger Zeile and the construction of a new street underpass at Säntisstraße.

A total of nine track crossings will be replaced by bridges or underpasses. To avoid stopping traffic on the street, the construction will be completed so as to leave one of the two neighboring track crossings as an alternative route.

In order to protect residents against noise during construction work and while the railway track is in operation, 350 meters of sound protection wall have already been built to the south of Lichtenrade train station. A sound protection wall will also be built this year between Attilastraße and Schichauweg this year.

Background to the “Dresdner Bahn”
The roughly 16 kilometer long Berlin-Dresden railway is part of the Berlin-Dresden route, and has been in existence since 1875. Long-distance trains have not run on the route since 1952. The Dresden railway starts south of the Berlin Südkreuz train station, where the track branches off of the Berlin-Halle railway, crossing the Berlin/Brandenburg state border after 8.7 kilometers and continuing to Blankenfelde towards Dresden. This makes the line part of the Orient - Eastern Mediterranean European corridor, which connects the strategically important harbors of the Baltic and North Seas with the Black Sea and the Mediterranean. The maximum permitted speed in the urban area is limited to 160 km/h, and 200 km/h in the state of Brandenburg.

Max Maulwurf served as the DB ambassador for construction on this major project.

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