POLAND’s prime minister, Mr Mateusz Morawiecki, has announced plans to invest Zlotys 200bn ($US 53.58bn) in rail and road infrastructure under the country’s Polish New Deal plan to stimulate recovery following the Covid-19 pandemic.

The funding was announced during a visit to view reconstruction of Warsaw West station and sign a contract for construction of the Warsaw - Solidarity Transport Hub (CPK) - Łódź high-speed line. The station renovation includes the reconstruction of the track, new platforms, upgrades to the traffic control system and improved interchanges with public transport.

The CPK project is a planned transport hub between Warsaw and Łódź, which includes the construction of a new airport 37km west of Warsaw, as well as the development of 10 high-speed rail lines radiating to major centres across Poland. The hub is designed to reduce travel times between Warsaw and the largest Polish cities to less than 2.5 hours.

The CPK is currently in its initial planning phase, with the Polish government already adopting several conceptual decisions. The rail component includes around 1800km of new high-speed lines, with a design speed of up to 350km/h, and the modernisation of 2400km of conventional lines.

Preparatory work will now begin on the first 140km line from Warsaw West to Łódź via the CPK, which is due to open in 2027. In May, CPK selected a consortium of IDOM, Multiconsult, Transprojekt Gdański and Arcadis to undertake a technical, economic and environmental study for the line, excluding the section through the airport. 

“We are betting on the railway of the future by committing huge funds from both the state and community budgets to the construction of the modern railway investment plan,” Morawiecki says. “Investment in the railways will make it possible to change the transport system by modernising inter-regional links so that the whole of Poland can develop evenly.”

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