New hope for Munich's second Stammstrecke
The funding for a second mainline running through Munich has been in deliberation for many years now; however, the possible financing of a second Stammstrecke has never been as close as it is now. It appears that the millions that had been planned to be spent on the airport may now be channeled into the construction of this new S-Bahn line.
Will Munich's S-Bahns soon find themselves with two differing main lines? On Wednesday evening the treasury of the Bundestag negotiated a scheme with Bavarian Prime Minister Horst, Seehofer (CSU) and Mayor, Christian Ude (SPD), which could indeed salvage the project of the century. The discussion focused on the funding of the project, which was last estimated at being around 2 billion euros. The federal government is no longer in the position to give the previously agreed 900 million euros towards the project funds, finding itself only able to offer around 200 million euros instead. Bavaria is already putting 923 million towards the cause and the German rail organisation is able to put around 113 million into the kitty. The question is, will it be possible to find the remaining 700 million euros?
Ministerpräsident (Bavarian Prime Minister) Seehofer wished to offer 350 million euros from the federal government and also tried to wrest a further 350 million from the city, however, he met resistance from Munich's mayor, Christian Ude. The focus has now switched to the possibility of re-channeling airport funds, a grand total of 492 million euros, given to Munich Airport by the Freistaat (the Free State) and the Bund (federal government) in the 90s. The agreement of the Freistaat is already secure and the City Council has shown its support for the re-channeling of these funds into plans for Munich's second Stammstrecke, despite votes against the plans from the Greens.
It was, however, still unclear as to whether the federal government had agreed to this new solution. The Bavarian SPD state group had requested the release of the project's budget information.
During Wednesday evening's meeting over the search for the funds, Munich's CSU deputy Frankenhauser Herbert stated that 'nothing is decided'. This still leaves the possibility of a second Stammstrecke for Munich's S-Bahns somewhat in the air. However, the fiscal situation for the project is looking more hopeful than ever before. Watch this space.