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Approval process in Germany

To obtain approval for the construction of the Fehmarnbelt Fixed Link, a plan approval procedure has to be carried out in Germany. On 31 January 2019, the plan approval decision was issued.

Road and railway projects are usually approved in Germany through a regulatory approval process, which results in an overall project approval. Regulatory approval is issued based on a project application, which includes the construction project’s design, area needs, the alignment, construction methods and an assessment of the project’s environmental impacts.

Femern A/S drew up the plan approval documents in collaboration with the Lübeck branch of the State Agency for Road Construction and Transportation of Schleswig-Holstein (LBV-SH) – the project proponent for the road section of the Fehmarnbelt Fixed Link located on German territory. On 18 October 2013, Femern A/S applied to the Kiel headquarters of the State Agency for Road Construction and Transportation of Schleswig-Holstein (LBV-SH), the responsible plan approval authority, for a plan approval procedure to be carried out.

The public, the authorities and associations were able to submit objections and opinions during the first consultation phase in summer 2014. The first consultation phase concluded with hearings that were conducted by the hearing authority from July to November 2015. These served for discussion of duly raised objections and opinions with the stakeholders. 

On 13 June 2016, Femern A/S together with the Lübeck branch of the State Agency for Road Construction and Transportation of Schleswig-Holstein submitted a revised version of the plan approval documents and thus requested the plan amendment from the competent plan approval authority. 

The hearing authority has again conducted a participation process concerning the requested plan amendment, for which objections and opinions have also been submitted. As usual in the hearing procedure, the hearing authority has sent all the objections to the project proponents and asked for an opinion ("responses"). These responses from the project proponents to the objections raised have now been submitted to the hearing authority. The hearing authority will use both the objections and the responses in preparation for the upcoming discussion session. 

In the discussion sessions held between May and July 2017, the objections and opinions concerning the planned project were discussed jointly by the objectors, the authorities and the project proponents under the direction of the hearing authority. In addition, the project proponents explained their plans and answered open questions. 

Since 1 January 2018, the newly established authority Amt für Planfeststellung Verkehr Schleswig-Holstein (APV) has been responsible for the plan approval procedure. On 31 January 2019, the plan approval decision was issued by the authority.

You can find the plan approval documents on the online portal of the plan approval procedure in Schleswig-Holstein (in German).

On 13 June 2016, Femern A/S and LBV Lübeck applied for approval of the updated project application.