Eurostar could be forced to halt Amsterdam trains for years

Simply two years into Eurostar’s a lot raved-about Amsterdam route, the long-distance operator has hit a bump within the tracks.

Deliberate renovation works at Amsterdam Centraal station, scheduled for 2024, would put the terminal Eurostar makes use of for passport management and safety checks out of motion for a number of years.

The works are set to be carried out by ProRail, the federal government organisation tasked with extending and sustaining the Netherlands’ rail community.

In a letter to the Netherlands parliament, state secretary of infrastructure Vivianne Heijnen stated: “The house is required for development work and the state of affairs could be very advanced.”

Ms Heijnen stated there was no accessible house elsewhere with safe entry to the platform, and known as the plans “unacceptable”.

Within the letter, she known as on authorities organisation Professional Rail to “do all the things potential along with NS to unravel the issues surrounding Eurostar throughout the renovation of Amsterdam Centraal.”

Ms Heijnen additionally emphasised the significance of the UK-Netherlands rail hyperlink in easing the quantity of much less sustainable short-haul flights.

A Eurostar spokesperson stated: “We’ve got an settlement with the Dutch railway that enables us to function from the terminal at Amsterdam Central Station till November 2023.

“After that interval, plenty of potential choices have been outlined, however a closing determination is but to be made.

“There’s presently no danger that we are going to cease working this service. It’s nonetheless, vital to have a fast determination on the vacation spot station in Amsterdam to guarantee continuity on the route.”

ProRail advised native media that it hoped to seek out an alternate Amsterdam location for Eurostar by the tip of this 12 months, with the “ambition” being to maintain it at Amsterdam Centraal.

The operation may be moved to Amsterdam South, the place ProRail is planning to construct a 3rd platform.

“We predict Eurostar is extraordinarily vital,” stated a ProRail spokesperson. “It is a superb service that’s extensively used.”

In April it was confirmed that Eurostar will broaden its European routes by merging with Belgian operator Thalys, a transfer that may create a extra complete community connecting the UK with Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium, in addition to extra of France on high-speed trains.

The European Fee accepted the merger on 26 April, following earlier discussions between the 2 operators previous to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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