Thanks to major investments launched by the Government of the Republic of Serbia, and with the full assistance and support of the Ministry of Construction, Transport and Infrastructure, a comprehensive process of modernising Serbia’s railways has begun, following decades of neglect for this transport system that left it almost on its last legs. Thanks to this, rail infrastructure represents the largest construction site in the country, thereby contributing to the progress and development of the whole of Serbia, says Director General of Serbian Railways Infrastructure Miroljub Jevtić.
“We, thus, in 2018 continued works and activities on the construction of the rail line for high speeds of up to 200km/h between Belgrade and Subotica, which has a total value exceeding two billion USD. Works are underway on the section from Belgrade Centre to Zemun, where the contractor is a consortium of Chinese companies, while Russian company RZD International has already laid the first tracks for high-speed lines between Stara Pazova and Novi Sad and carried out half of the works on the ‘Čortanovci’ tunnel and viaduct, as the most complex built structure on the route of the new railway line.
“In the last year, Serbian Railways Infrastructure also completed construction of the Žeželj Bridge in Novi Sad, as well as the reconstruction of seven and a half kilometres of tracks along the route Topčider-Rakovica- Resnik, while the function of Belgrade’s main railway station has been taken over by the Belgrade Centre Station in Prokop. When I add to that the fact, thanks to a Russian loan over the past few years, a total of 205 kilometres of railroads in Serbia have been reconstructed and modernised, then I can certainly claim that more is being invested in railways infrastructure today than in the previous decades combined,” says Miroljub Jevtić.
During 2018, around 280 kilometres were reconstructed, for the first time after several decades, while another 480 kilometres of regional railroads in Serbia will be completed during this year and next
Which projects will be current in this and the following years?
– Activities on the construction of the high-speed between Belgrade and Subotica will be increasingly intensified in the coming period. In addition to that, modernisation of the Niš-Dimitovgrad, Niš-Brestovac and Jajinci-Mala Krsna lines will also begin in 2019, as well as reconstruction of electrical and technical infrastructure along rail corridors.
In cooperation with RZD International, construction of the Unified Dispatch Centre for Rail Traffic Management is planned, as well as the continuation of works on modernisation of 207 kilometres of the Bar railroad, from Valjevo to Vrbnica, which connects to the already completed section from Resnik to Valjevo.
Apart from national mainline routes, will regional railroads also be reconstructed?
– Along with the modernisation of the mainline rail corridors through Serbia, Serbian Railways Infrastructure has created a three-year programme for the revitalisation of all regional railroads, which began in 2018. During 2018, around 280 kilometres were reconstructed, for the first time after several decades, while another 480 kilometres of regional railroads in Serbia will be completed during this year and next. In this way, the network of mainline and regional railroads in Serbia will be completely modernised in just a few years, which will enable fast, high-quality and competitive rail transport according to high European standards.