1977 & 1981
Development programme for Klagenfurt and environs and for the Carinthian Central Region
The following statements and objectives were formulated in the programme:
The transport network must be developed in such a way that Carinthia becomes integrated into greater Europe and the economy of the federal province can develop.
Improvement of the transport connection between the Carinthian Central Region and the neighbouring central regions in Italy and Yugoslavia is of particular significance.
With this, the construction of the "Koralmbahn" line, the "Carinthian Central Region project" and the expansion of the Villach intersection as projects in Carinthia on the Baltic - Adriatic Corridor were addressed.
Development vision "Future of Carinthia"
One of the principal strategic goals is "improving fast access to Carinthia by rail". With regard to the two factors having influence on the location, transport and mobility, the "upgrade of the Pontebbana rail axis, and in particular the building of the Koralmbahn line and the Semmering base tunnel, are essential for ensuring the long-term competitiveness of Southern Austria as a location."
Austrian national transport plan
The subject of the Koralmbahn line is addressed in the Austrian national transport plan in conjunction with the so-called "Süd-Ost-Spange" rail link, which was still being discussed at the time. The building of this line would meet the requirements for a high-speed rail link: namely, that it should increase the quality of transport offered both for passenger and goods traffic; and that it should provide a high-quality link to the rail networks of neighbouring countries.
The United Nations' Agenda 21
As a signatory to Agenda 21, Austria committed itself, amongst other things, to aspiring to create and support cost-efficient, high-performance, "greener" and safer transport systems. The upgrade of the rail infrastructure in the Baltic - Adriatic Corridor as a means of diverting traffic from the roads to rail and with a view to reducing the negative effects of transport - in particular, air pollutants - must be seen as directly linked to this agenda.
EU Treaty of Accession - road and rail transport
Amongst other points in this treaty, the rail transport axes are identified as a part of the trans-European rail and combined traffic network. Reference is already being made to the Baltic - Adriatic Corridor, with the routing given as "Prague - Vienna - Tarvisio - Pontebbana - Udine".
The "Koralm summit meeting" between Carinthia and Styria
Three "Koralm summit meetings" had previously been held between representatives of the federal provinces of Carinthia and Styria to establish their respective positions. In a joint resolution signed by the federal provinces and by the federal capitals of Klagenfurt and Graz, the signatories called for the modernisation of the railway network in order to reduce geographical disadvantages with regard to transport.
In particular, they called for the financing for this project to be secured and for the process to be speeded up and concentrated into one overall process for the new southern railway including the Koralmbahn line. This resolution underlines the importance of the Koralmbahn line for Southern Austria and is a positive signal for the expansion and upgrade of the Southern Austrian railway network.
The results of the corridor selection and the corresponding resolutions of the federal parliaments are presented.
Austrian national transport plan: Master plan 2015
The plan states: "The current southern main line integrates the south of the country and, in particular, Austria's second largest city - Graz - only very poorly. The Koralmbahn line will hugely enhance the position of Southern Austria, reduce the travelling time between Graz and Klagenfurt to one hour and will open up new opportunities in regional and long-distance transport."
Resolution by the national government: the Koralmbahn project is in the national interest
Austrian national transport plan
The southern corridor - the Austrian section of the Baltic - Adriatic Corridor - is designated one of the six main corridors in Austria. The building of the Graz - Klagenfurt section is assigned a "B" rating with regard to the urgency of implementing the necessary works. According to the plan, further upgrade of the Koralmbahn line to a full dual-track line should take place by 2011.
Verkehrsinitiative Süd - "The Transport Initiative for the South"
As the southernmost federal provinces, Carinthia and Styria have always been at a significant disadvantage, in terms of infrastructure, compared to the large central regions of Austria, in particular in the north and east of the country. The two Governors - Dr. Haider, of Carinthia, and Ms. Klasnic, of Styria - agreed to form a joint planning organisation with the name "Verkehrsinitiative Süd" (previously known as "Planungsgruppe Süd", the Planning Group for the South) to prepare and coordinate all infrastructural activities common to both their regions.
The Governors of both Carinthia and Styria, as equal partners in the "Verkehrsinitiative Süd" joint venture would work to ensure that all knowledge and
data relating to the technical, spatial planning and administrative aspects of transport planning in their respective areas would be made available to the joint venture and to avoid anything that could hinder or damage the implementation of actions agreed to be in the common interest.
Collaboration between Carinthia - Friuli-Venezia Giulia-Veneto - Salzburg
The paper "Declaration on the collaboration in the areas of transport infrastructure - logistics - information transfer between Carinthia - Friuli-Venezia Giulia-Veneto - Salzburg" stresses the importance of two transport axes providing connections between important Central European regions and the eastern edge of the Po delta and the harbour system of the Upper Adriatic:
„Adriatic-Baltic Axis" Warsaw-Prague-Vienna-Graz-Italy-the Upper Adriatic region
The Munich-Salzburg-Villach-Tarvisio-Udine-Venice-Trieste axis
As part of this, the role of the Pontebbana line as well as that of the Tauern alpine axis is to be strengthened at European level. The Villach and Cervignano junctions, which act as intersections between the Tauern axis and the Baltic - Adriatic corridor, are vital to the success of the project to build a high-speed rail line in Carinthia.
Summit meeting at Warmbad Villach on rail infrastructure in the South
The Governors Haider and Klasnic, Assessore Sonego and Deputy Governor Haslauer sign the agreement on collaboration between the four regions. The "Baltic - Adriatic Axis" is presented for the first time by Department 7 (Commercial Law and Infrastructure) of the Government Office of Carinthia and is included in the regions' agreement.
TEN - Guidelines for the development of a trans-European transport network
The TEN - networks, amongst other things, are supposed to ensure permanently sustainable passenger and goods transport and at the same time contribute to the realisation of Community-wide objectives, in particular in the area of environmental
protection. An underlying theme in these deliberations was the strengthening of collective economic and social cohesion.
In the overarching model for the trans-European rail network in 2004, the Austrian section of the Baltic - Adriatic Corridor "Wroclaw - Bruck/Mur - Graz - Klagenfurt - Villach - Tarvisio" is already listed for Austria, with the Koralm section as the section planned for high-speed rail transport. The expansion/upgrade of the Baltic - Adriatic Axis between Gdansk and Vienna has by now become one of the 30 main EU projects, planned for implementation from as soon as 2010.
Letter of Intent
On 12 October 2006, the Ministers for Transport from Poland, the Czech and Slovak Republics, Italy and Austria signed the Letter of Intent. In order to give the Baltic - Adriatic Axis - along with the key Austrian projects "Vienna main station", "Semmering base tunnel" and the "Koralmbahn line" - greater prominence and significance, and with a view to the upcoming review of the trans-European networks, the signatories are advocating extending the existing TEN project "Gdansk-Vienna" from Vienna to Venice, including the Austrian projects.