Elbferry Presents Alternative To Elbe Tunnel

Two sustainable ferries from above

What sounds like a modern and sustainable traffic concept for the Elbe crossing from Glückstadt (Steinburg district) to Wischhafen in Lower Saxony is also the last chance for the shipping company FRS Elbfähre Glückstadt Wischhafen. With the further construction of the A20, a tunnel under the Elbe is planned. That would be the end for the shipping company from Schleswig-Holstein.


Half The Time With Electric Propulsion

The shipping company has therefore drawn up a concept for further operation and is focusing on an environmentally friendly alternative instead of building a new tunnel under the Elbe. According to the concept, the ferries between Glückstadt and Wischhafen are to be completely converted to electric propulsion. In addition, it is planned to cut the journey time in half - from just under half an hour to only 14 minutes, according to the company.

However, this is only feasible if the planned Elbe tunnel in the course of highway 20 is not built or not built in the near future, said the company's managing director, Birte Dettmers.


Ferry Capacities To Be Multiplied

The concept is to begin by having four electric ferries built with greater capacity. One of the ships will cost around 15 million euros, she said. According to the company, the ships are designed as double-ended ferries to avoid time-consuming turning maneuvers. Double jetties would then have to be built in Glückstadt and Wischhafen to be able to handle two ferries at a time. Subsequently, the concept proposes the construction of two additional ferries so that capacity can be increased to 600 percent. "With our future concept for green mobility, we can create a floating highway and guarantee sustainable and environmentally friendly ferry traffic without waiting times," explains Tim Kunstmann, Managing Director of FRS Elbfähre Glückstadt Wischhafen.


Commitments From Politicians Necessary

The shipping company also made one thing clear during the presentation of its concept in Glückstadt: planning and investment security from politicians is needed for implementation.

Schleswig-Holstein's Transport Minister Bernd Buchholz (FDP) believes that the shipping company's concept will not be able to replace a tunnel solution: "Even if it is faster across the Elbe at Glückstadt Wischhafen. We're talking about capacities that are about four times what we want to realize with the tunnel, compared to what the ferry could ever do." That's why the drilled tunnel for the A20 is actually needed, Buchholz added.



Source: ndr.de