Lighthouse Project For Germany

Two sustainable ferries from above

The FRS Elbe Ferry concept offers a real alternative to the solid A20 crossing by providing a sustainable and environmentally friendly ferry service without waiting times. For the implementation, however, the shipping company needs planning and investment security as well as support from politicians.


Concept For Green Mobility Of FRS Elbfähre Glückstadt Wischhafen - Increase Of Ferry Line Capacity To 600 %


  • Emission-free
  • 600% total capacity
  • 14 minutes travel time


Read the entire concept paper here (in German):



In August 2021, FRS Elbfähre already presented a first concept for a green crossing of the Elbe. Due to the enormous positive response, the shipping company has now revised the concept once again. In three steps, a sustainable and environmentally friendly ferry service without waiting times will be created. In the first step, four emission-free electric ferries will be built, each with a larger capacity than the previous ferries. For this purpose, FRS Elbfähre has already developed a professional shipbuilding concept in cooperation with the Hamburg ship design office Technolog Services. It intends to build the ships as double-ended ferries, as this avoids the time-consuming turning maneuvers in the ports and automatically achieves a higher frequency. It is also planned that the jetty in Wischhafen will be moved towards the Elbe waterway and designed as a double jetty. The simultaneous loading and unloading of two ferries in Wischhafen, together with the shortened route, will ensure a higher frequency and number of departures. BUND and NABU Lower Saxony support the preservation of the ferry line and call on politicians to prioritize the relocation of the jetty in compliance with European and national nature conservation laws in the Süderelbe. The ferries will be powered by green electricity generated by a combined use of photovoltaic systems from open land areas and covered car stowage areas as well as port operation areas. The first step will bring an increase in capacity to 300 %.

In the second step, the jetty in Glückstadt will be optimized and also converted into a double jetty, which will allow two ferries to be loaded and unloaded at the same time. In addition, the jetty will be realigned accordingly so that the Rhinplate, which lies in front of the current jetty, no longer has to be completely bypassed. Together with improved logistics in front of the jetties through more lanes and parking areas, congestion in Glückstadt can be avoided. The second step increases the original capacity to 400 %. In the third step, two more emission-free double-ended ferries can optionally be built to increase the total capacity to 600 %.

The green mobility concept of FRS Elbfähre Glückstadt Wischhafen is a real alternative to the fixed A20 crossing through a sustainable and environmentally friendly ferry service without waiting times. The concept is not only significantly cheaper than the A20 tunnel but also offers many advantages. A significant advantage is the protection of the environment and the massive savings in CO2 emissions. However, it should also not be neglected that only with a ferry crossing of the Elbe can pedestrians, cyclists, agricultural vehicles and hazardous goods transports continue to cross the Elbe between Schleswig-Holstein and Lower Saxony. In addition, the continued existence of the FRS Elbfähre Glückstadt Wischhafen would secure around 70 local jobs and also mean a major contribution to the further development of environmentally friendly tourism in Schleswig-Holstein and Lower Saxony. However, all this is only possible if FRS Elbfähre Glückstadt Wischhafen has planning and investment security to implement the project. The ships are designed and built specifically for transport and are not suitable for any other trade. A sale or use of the ships in any other area is excluded. Managing Director Tim Kunstmann commented: "If the A20 tunnel is built, this will result in the shutdown of the FRS Elbe ferries. With our future concept for green mobility, we can create a floating highway and guarantee sustainable and environmentally friendly ferry traffic without waiting times, but for this we need planning security. This is not guaranteed as long as the A20 is held on to." In addition to planning security, support and funding from politics around the topic of landside infrastructure is also necessary.

The management of FRS Elbfähre, together with its team, sees itself as responsible for making a long-term and sustainable contribution to reducing the shipping company's ecological footprint. The solution, a CO2-neutral mobility, could be implemented pragmatically. Independently of the company's new concept, FRS Elbfähre is planning to install an automated mooring system on the existing ships. This will result in a saving of 20 % of the previous fuel consumption after the ships have been converted. With the help of the system, the Elbe ferries will in future be able to switch off their engines when loading and unloading the ships, as they will be held at the jetty by the system.



FRS Elbfähre Glückstadt Wischhafen GmbH
Am Fleth 49, 25348 Glückstadt, Germany
Birte Dettmers, Managing Director and Public Relations
Email: dettmers[at]