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Local public transport: Bundestag sets the course for better local public transport

2022-12-16T09:36:50.233Z

The federal government will transfer more money in the future to strengthen the range of buses and trains. But the coalition is still bickering as to whether local transport will be prioritized in the planning process.



Enlarge image

Subway in Berlin at the entrance

Photo:

Christoph Soeder / dpa

The financial injection promised by the federal government for local transport with buses and trains can come.

The Bundestag passed a law on Thursday evening that increases the annual subsidy to the federal states by one billion euros.

In addition, the amount of the so-called regionalization funds will automatically increase by 3 percent per year instead of the previous 1.8 percent.

This is an important step towards strengthening local public transport, said Transport Minister Volker Wissing.

»Public transport is the central element of modern and sustainable mobility.«

The increases with a total volume of around 17.3 billion euros by 2031 had been agreed by Chancellor Olaf Scholz and the Prime Ministers at the beginning of November.

They were the condition of the federal states for their financial participation in the 49-euro ticket.

The Federal Council's approval of the law is considered certain.

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The nationwide public transport ticket with an introductory price of 49 euros per month is to build on the 9-euro ticket from the summer.

"People are waiting for the ticket," said Wissing.

"Now the federal states and the transport companies have to deliver." The vote of the 16 federal states in the Bundesrat is scheduled for this Friday.

Planning procedure: "Rail before road" required

The Federal Environment Agency (UBA) has called for a focus on cycling and rail transport in the coalition's planned acceleration of planning processes.

When it comes to accelerating transport projects, "in terms of environmental and climate protection, it is important to give priority to more environmentally friendly types of transport," said UBA President Dirk Messner to the "Redaktionsnetzwerk Deutschland".

The expansion of public transport, the bicycle traffic and footpath infrastructure should be given priority, as well as »rail before road«.

However, there has so far been no agreement in the coalition dispute about faster planning processes and the question of what should be preferred is a sticking point there.

Environment Minister Steffi Lemke (Greens) pointed out that the cabinet decided in June that the focus should be on projects that serve climate protection - as well as investments in rail or the maintenance and replacement of bridges in particular.

»The construction and expansion of motorways, roads or waterways does not belong in this category.« New motorways do not serve to achieve the climate goals, »the opposite is the case«.

Transport Minister Volker Wissing (FDP), on the other hand, wants faster planning processes – also for motorways.

kig/dpa-AFX

Source: spiegel

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