25.01.2019

Position paper on the TEN-T Orient/East-Med Corridor published

The international working group of ARL, chaired by Prof. Dr. Bernd Scholl, ETH Zurich from 2015 until 2018 addressed open questions and challenges regarding the spatial and railway development of the TEN-T Orient/East-Mediterranean Corridor (OEM) Hamburg – Athens. Recently, important insights were published by the ARL as position paper.

From the working group's point of view, the Orient/East-Med Corridor is of utmost importance for the future cohesion of Europe. With its length of more than 2'000 km it connects the strong economic zones of the western EU member states to the prospering capital regions of the southeastern EU member states. The position paper includes the “Assessment positions” of four years of intensive work as well as a draft for the future actions (“positions and recommendations”). According to the experts, the further development of the corridor is of strategic importance:

  1. The Orient/East-Med Corridor can contribute to promote social cohesion of the population along the corridor. The shortfall in economic development could be decreased, especially in southeast Europe. This could also collectively strengthen the economic competitiveness of Europe in general.
  2. The transfer of freight transport from road to rail, called for by the EU, especially in the case of the OEM Corridor, would contribute to balancing hinterland transport from the maritime harbours. The overloaded hinterland corridors in northwest Europe could be relieved of considerable traffic if the harbours of Piraeus and Thessaloniki and the Adriatic harbours played a stronger role.
  3. Appropriately integrated development of the Corridor enables promising opportunities for sustainable settlement and spatial development in the catchment areas of railway stations and in hub areas of public transport.

How does the work of the expert group continue? As next steps to follow, the final report of our working group will be published by the end of 2019. In addition to that, it is targeted to intensify the collaboration on this corridor, which is so important for the cohesion of Europe. Thus, we plan to organize a Corridor Conference on the Hamburg-Athens Corridor in January/February 2020. The venue will take place at the TU Vienna. Further information will be published in due time.

The position paper is available here: https://shop.arl-net.de/spatial-and-transport-development-in-european-corridors.html