One corridor from Munich to Verona

The Brenner Corridor Studies: Cross-border. Well founded. Commonly agreed

Under the chairmanship of the European Coordinator of the Scandinavian-Mediterranean Corridor, Pat Cox, various working groups within the Brenner Corridor Platform are working on holistic solutions for the Brenner Corridor. The vision pursued by the representatives of the three Ministries of Transport, the three Infrastructure Managers, BBT SE, regions and railway undertakings: One harmonised corridor from Munich to Verona. With the aim to create the infrastructure and operational conditions for the effective transfer of heavy goods traffic from road to rail until the opening of the Brenner Base Tunnel and its access routes.


A key milestone on this path was achieved with the finalisation of the Brenner Corridor Studies.

BCP Freight Transport Study

The study provides a uniform and acknowledged picture for future rail freight traffic volumes on the Munich-Verona corridor. Starting in 2016 as the base year and taking into account all alternative Alpine crossings, future freight train numbers at the 2030 and 2040 horizons are forecasted.

Subgroup WG Infrastructure, October 2021

BCP Passenger Transport Study

The study analyses the future demand for rail passenger transport on the Munich to Verona corridor at the 2030 and 2040 horizons. For fast track and regular long-distance traffic, various stop patterns and frequencies have been examined for this purpose.

Subgroup WG Infrastructure, October 2021

Total train numbers 2030 & 2040

Figure showing the total train number in the corridor Munich - Verona for the time horizons 2030 and 2040, based on the results of the BCP studies.

Subgroup WG Infrastructure, October 2021

BCP corridor studies on passenger and freight transport: Why?

In recent years of project development along the Brenner Corridor, project implementers have experienced major difficulties in justifying their projects publicly and partly also politically. One main element of concern in this regard was outdated or non-existent corridor transport forecasts of expected volumes on rail. Consequently, each project – being it north or south of the Brenner Base Tunnel – was communicating different rail volumes to be expected along the corridor in the future.

National transport forecasts for the Brenner axis lacked international harmonisation (assumptions, calculation methods, planning horizons etc.), which additionally fueled discussions of overall appropriateness of planning documents. Particularly in certain regions along the corridor, people were (and still are) heavily postulating the proof of increasing capacity demand on rail.

Taking into account those concerns, the Working Group Infrastructure of the Brenner Corridor Platform agreed on conducting studies to jointly and trilaterally identify expected future rail developments along the Brenner Corridor between Munich and Verona based on planned infrastructure upgrades. The need for such studies was later also confirmed by the European Court of Auditors. Hence, two studies have been contracted to examine the future development of rail freight transport as well the potential for future long-distance rail services in an integrated and comprehensive way between Munich and Verona based on common assumptions, calculation methods, planning horizons etc.

The execution of these trilaterally coordinated studies marks a milestone of cross-border transport forecasting in Europe and might serve as flagship and best practice example for jointly analysing international transport flows in other cross-border regions.

BCP corridor studies: How?

The methodologies of analysing future transport demand on rail – both long-distance passenger and freight transport – have been discussed in detail with relevant experts involved. They were elaborated in an open and transparent process on an iterative working basis, including many feedback loops. The trilateral subgroup’s consent was always precondition in order to take the next steps. In a final step, the methodology developed in the subgroup, including the results, were fully approved by the members of the WG Infrastructure, where the three ministries, the three infrastructure managers, the BBT SE and the regions are represented. The results are stable and robust and based on sound methodological approaches and models that take into account the specificities of the Brenner Corridor (see operating days, double traction due to gradient, etc.).

How can the studies be contextualised in terms of existing/future national forecasts?

Due to the trilateral elaboration of the studies, it was necessary to diverge from some national approaches in the modelling process and to make a specific-adapted methodology taking into account the characteristics of the Brenner Corridor. By bringing in and applying data and expertise from all three Infrastructure Managers, very robust and clearly arguable results have been achieved which address the specifics of the Brenner Corridor.

The BCP studies are to be understood as an output which is to be used as far as possible both at European and national level for the planning and realisation of future infrastructure development. The studies do not replace existing national forecasts, but rather complement them. As far as future national forecasts are concerned, the BCP studies should also serve as a common basis.

BCP Terminal Study

The study analyses in a first step all terminals with Brenner related traffic in terms of their total capacity and transhipment volumes. Taking into account the planned upgrades, the forecast traffic volume from the freight study has been integrated in a second step in order to draw conclusions on the potential capacity utilisation of the terminals at the 2030 and 2040 horizons.

WG Terminals, December 2021

BCP Noise Study

The report builds on the 2015 BCP Noise Report and presents the current state of noise emissions along the road and railway lines on the Munich to Verona corridor.

WG Environment, October 2021
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