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Regular services between Henri Coandă airport and the centre of București began with the timetable change on December 12.
Trains run every 40 min throughout the day and night, using a 2·95 km double-track branch off CFR’s București – Urziceni line to reach the airport station located adjacent to Terminal 1.
Built by a consortium of Arcada, ISPCF and DB Engineering & Consulting under a 398m lei design and build contract awarded in June 2019, the branch was due to have been finished in June 2020 to cater for the UEFA Euro 2020 football competition. The deadline proved impossible to meet because construction was temporarily suspended in December 2019 pending resolution of a dispute with a hotel that had complained about construction noise.
The 19 km trip takes 20 min and the fare costs 4 lei. There are 36 return services a day, with operations shared between CFR Călători, TFC and Regio Călători.
CFR Călători has deployed Siemens Desiro Classic VT642 trainsets to operate 21 round trips a day. Regio Călători uses Class X72500 DMUs acquired second-hand from SNCF to work 10 return trips, while TFC operates five services a day each way with DH2 Wadloper sets formerly used by Netherlands Railways or VT614 DMUs once owned by Deutsche Bahn.
Some trains call at a station serving the Telekom Arena Rink owned by former tennis player Ion Țiriac.
State Secretary for Transport Ionel Irinel Scrioșteanu said earlier this year that the rail link would help to reduce the amount of car traffic in București and the northern part of the Ilfov region.
This article first appeared on www.railwaygazette.com
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