EIA report for a fixed link across the Fehmarnbelt submitted for public consultation


The Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report for the fixed link across the Fehmarnbelt is now ready to be considered by the Danish authorities and citizens. 28 June 2013 is the date set by Transport Minister, Henrik Dam Kristensen, for the beginning of the consultation period for the project.

The fixed link across the Fehmarnbelt consists of a four-lane motorway and a dual-track, electrified railway. The maximum speed on the railway is 200 km/h and is 110 km/h on the motorway. When the link is completed in late 2021, a crossing under the Fehmarnbelt will take approximately seven minutes by train and around 10 minutes by car. 

The authorities in both Denmark and Germany are set to assess whether the project for the fixed link across the Fehmarnbelt can be approved and will decide on those conditions that are applicable for its construction. The Danish public consultation for the EIA report will now commence, while the German regulatory approval process is expected to begin later in 2013. 

EIA process after four years of studies 
The Ministry of Transport will carry out the consultation on the basis of the EIA report (Environmental Impact Assessment) which Femern A/S has prepared following more than four years of extensive studies. 

Throughout the consultation period, which runs from 28 June 2013 to 20 September 2013, the public – citizens, the authorities, NGOs and businesses – will have the opportunity to come up with ideas, suggestions and comments. 

As part of the public consultation, a public meeting is scheduled on Thursday 29 August 2013 from 17.00 to 20.00 in Lalandia, Rødby, where everyone will have the opportunity to ask questions and express their views. 

Once the consultation period is over, the Minister of Transport, in partnership with the relevant authorities and Femern A/S, will respond to all suggestions and comments on the project in a consultation paper. 

Following the EIA report and the consultation paper, a proposal will be drawn up for a Construction Act to be tabled in Parliament by the end of 2014. 

The recommendation is that the immersed tunnel is the preferred technical solution, but the alternative technical solutions are also set out in the EIA report. The proposal for the Construction Act will include a recommendation for the final technical solution for the coast-to-coast link as well as the Danish landworks. 

When Folketinget (the Danish parliament) has passed the Construction Act and the German authorities have issued their project approval, Femern A/S will enter into construction contracts and so construction work will begin on the coast-to-coast link. 

Usually, an EIA consultation period lasts for eight weeks but it has been decided to extend it to 12 weeks because the consultation is being launched just before the summer holiday period.   

A summary report of the EIA report for a fixed link across the Fehmarnbelt can be seen throughout the consultation period at www.hoeringsportalen.dk. In addition, Femern A/S is publishing the EIA report and all associated background reports and visualisation at www.vvmdocumentation.femern.com. 

In the months to come, Femern A/S will be working on three key processes for the planning of the fixed link across the Fehmarnbelt: 

The Danish approval process 
The German approval process 
Tenders and preparations for the construction phase 
It is anticipated that the proposal for the Construction Act will be submitted to the Danish parliament at the end of 2014 in order that the Act can be adopted in early 2015. German regulatory approval is expected in the first half of 2015. 

The construction work on the coast-to-coast link will then be able to start in the summer of 2015. The objective is for the tunnel between Rødbyhavn and Puttgarden to be open by the end of 2021.

Key milestones for the Fehmarnbelt Fixed Link

 2013 EIA process and start of preparations for the Construction ActTender process commences for the prequalified consortia
Submission of overall pplication to Germany
 2014 Price estimates from contractors in late 2014Tabling of Construction Act end of 2014
 2015 Construction Act adopted and German regulatory approval obtainedContracts with winning contractors signed
Construction underway in the summer
 2021 Fehmarnbelt Fixed Link opens in December

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