Breisgau-Hochschwarzwald: Extension and new construction of the Rhine Valley Railway: the deadline for objections for Section 8.4 from Bad Krozingen to Müllheim has expired – 700 private individuals have raised objections to railway planning, significantly fewer than at the first hearing in 2006

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In the consultation procedure for the planning approval section 8.4 from Bad Krozingen to Müllheim for the expansion and construction of the Rhine Valley Railway, the deadline for objections expired on September 30th. As the regional council Freiburg (RP) announced, in addition to the affected cities and communities Bad Krozingen, Heitersheim, Müllheim, Neuenburg am Rhein, Eschbach, Buggingen and Hartheim am Rhein, around 700 private individuals have raised objections to the plans of Deutsche Bahn.

Compared to the first hearing in 2006, the number of objections for this section has decreased significantly, according to the RP. In the proceedings relating to the former section 8.3 (the section name has since been changed) around 5,000 private objections were raised. Based on the resolutions of the subsequently established project advisory board, in which the federal government, the state, Deutsche Bahn and the region (regional associations, regional council, districts, cities and municipalities, citizens’ initiatives) were represented, Deutsche Bahn has comprehensively revised its plans. With the new planning, the so-called citizen route will be implemented. This means that the route was planned in a lower position and with improved noise protection. The aim is to achieve full protection for the entire section that goes beyond what is legally prescribed. For this purpose, the new planning provides for significantly higher noise protection walls, a noise protection gallery and rail dampers in the area that is not located in the lower area.

The RP announced that the focus of the current objections was on the concrete implementation of the construction project. Construction noise, weekend and night work as well as demands for a construction site and disposal concept for the excavation and for the mass surplus would be discussed in particular. The consumption of agricultural land – especially in the construction phase – with the negative impact of the project on agricultural operations is another major point of criticism. Other focal points are the partial cutting of the path and irrigation network as well as the specific design of the Hügelheim junction. A large number of private individuals have resorted to model objections.

The affected cities and municipalities have dealt intensively with the plans of the railway and issued extensive statements, according to the RP. A central topic for the community of Buggingen is the noise protection concept of Deutsche Bahn. The municipality demands that the full protection decided on in the project advisory board be fully implemented in the area of ​​Buggingen without taking into account the now planned rail dampers and the specially monitored track. For its district of Hügelheim, Müllheim demands that the junction planned there be changed and the routing reversed so that passenger traffic is routed at ground level and goods traffic at lower level under the existing tracks.

At the same time as the disclosure, around 85 authorities and other professionally affected bodies were heard. As the RP reports, they have also drawn attention to a large number of different issues in extensive statements.

The RP will now evaluate all the arguments presented. The next procedural step is then the public hearing. Until when this can be expected for Section 8.4 cannot be estimated at the moment, as the evaluation of the content must be completed for this.

The main features of section 8.4 are the most extensive track routing at a depth of up to ten meters and the renovation of the Hügelheim junction. The section is around twelve kilometers long. It begins in the north on the Schlatt district of the city of Bad Krozingen and ends in the south just behind the Hügelheim district boundary of the city of Müllheim.

(Press information: Freiburg Regional Council, October 15, 2020)

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