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RFF - Articles and news items

RFF’s impressive rail network modernisation plan

Issue 6 2013 / 4 December 2013 /

On 15 October 2012, Réseau Ferré de France (RFF) was ordered by Transport Minister, Frédéric Cuvillier, to table proposals to deliver major rail network modernisation (GPMR). Delivered to the Minister on 19 September 2013, the plan proposed is consistent with efforts to create a shared, long-term vision for rail transportation. According to the plan, €15 billion are to be earmarked for the network – in other words €2.5 billion per year – while a further €2.3 billion are to be specifically devoted to maintenance. But modernisation plans are not an exercise in allocating funds. The aim of the proposals set out in the GPMR is to lay the foundations for a new methodical approach to the network, where user requirements are central to the works scheduling rationale. The plan is, therefore, inextricably linked with the creation of a fully-fledged infrastructure manager and an integrated industrial public-sector group. The purpose of this article is to highlight the key principles that will shape network renewal and modernisation in the coming years.
New approach to network maintenance and modernisation – key principles

Ambitions for the French rail network over the next 10 years are running high, with the dual target being to put the network back on track on a sound and lasting basis, both financially and technically, and to rise to a multiplicity of overarching challenges (safety, traffic regularity and growth, simplifying train usage, shift towards renewable energies, etc.). To cater to these challenges, a new approach to network maintenance and modernisation is a ‘must’.

The FIF in the new French railway environment

Issue 6 2012 / 27 November 2012 /

My article in European Railway Review Issue 6 2011 outlined the prospect of a French railway system reform. This subject is still at the forefront of discussions within the industry and so constitutes the main topic of this article.

This agenda must be viewed against the backdrop of a very tough economic climate and of a new political landscape created by the election of a new President of the Republic, a new government and a new parliamentary majority.

Since taking office, the newly-appointed ministerial teams have initiated a review of the planned major transport projects (including railway-related projects) which will impact the regeneration of the country.

The government has confirmed its determination to unveil the main guidelines of the necessary and eagerly-awaited reform of the French railway system. As a result, the French railway industry, and of course the FIF, are challenged by a new situation of crucial importance for the sector’s future.

The reassessment of the major rail transport infrastructure projects will be a decisive factor for the next 30 years.

RFF to invest 3.4 billion euro in the rail network in 2012

Rail industry news / 24 September 2012 /

Implementation of the conclusions of the national rail consultation will create 25,000 jobs…