How can a new Polish airport become a rail freight hub?

Source: Railfreight
Date: 17th May 2022

Have you ever heard of the Solidarity Transport Hub under development in Poland? This new airport location is more than it sounds since it will bundle air, rail and road activities in one hub. How could rail freight benefit from it?

The Solidarity Transport Hub (STH) is also known as the New Central Polish Airport, estimated to be ready in 2027 to replace Warsaw’s Chopin Airport. Its location is in Stanisławów, between Warsaw and Łódz in Central Poland.

A first glance at the project helps understand that plans involving it are pretty ambitious. Apart from becoming Poland’s largest airport, STH will also bring together air, rail and road transport, becoming a passenger and freight rail traffic node.

Railway component
STH’s transport system will have three components, and rail is one of them. “The STH railway system will be based on approximately 2,000 km of new high-speed rail (HSR) lines and 3,700 km of modernised railway lines. Completing the STH railway program is one of the biggest ongoing engineering projects in Central Europe”, says the company.

Passenger traffic will be one of the primary focus areas. The airport’s railway station is estimated to serve 40 million passengers per year, providing fast and frequent connections with nearby locations and bringing distant destinations closer to Central Poland.

Intermodal hub
Nevertheless, with modern rail infrastructure in place, passenger traffic could not be the only rail traffic variant of STH. “A significant advantage of STH will also be intermodality and an excellent connection of the airport with every part of Poland and countries all over Europe, especially its central and eastern part. The Solidarity Transport Hub will be part of a rail hub at the centre of a new 1981 km long network. Thanks to these elements, it will be possible to reload equipment or goods onto rail in no time. This way, it will be possible to move people or cargo efficiently from the centre of Poland to any part of Europe”, explains STH.

Rail freight will benefit in the long run since an optimised European railway network will only bring positive results to the rail freight market and possibly eliminate many bottlenecks.

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