The Belgrade-Novi Sad railway, within the Belgrade-Budapest international railway, will be opened to traffic today, and the first high-speed train called “Soko” will run by Serbian President Aleskandar Vucic and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban.
The construction of the section of the railway from Belgrade to Novi Sad began at the end of 2017, for trains with a speed of 200 kilometers per hour, and it cost around 935 million dollars.
Regular passenger traffic on the 74.9-kilometer-long Belgrade-Sad railway will begin on Sunday, March 20.
The 34.5-kilometer section of the Belgrade Center Stara Pazova was built with a loan from the Chinese Exim Bank, and the value of the contract was $ 350.1 million. The contractor was the Chinese consortium “China Railway International” and “China Communications Construction Company”.
On the section of Stara Pazova Novi Sad, in the length of 40.4 kilometers, the works were performed by the Russian company “RZD International”, and the total value of that project is 585.5 million dollars. Funding was provided from a Russian loan for the modernization of Serbian railways.
On the high-speed railway, passengers will be transported by an older type of electric motor set, as well as two new “Stadler” double-decker sets with 314 seats.
In the promotional period, a one-way ticket will cost 300 dinars, and then the full price of a return ticket, as previously announced, should be 1,600 dinars, and 1,000 dinars in one direction.
Every day there will be 18 departures from both cities, the first at 05.25 from Belgrade, and at 05.28 from Novi Sad. The last train will depart at 22.02 from Novi Sad, and at 22.20 from the station Belgrade-Center, ie from Prokop.
There will be three types of trains: “Intercity”, “Regio-Express” and “Regio”, which will differ in the number of stations where they will stop, and thus in the duration of travel between the two cities.
“Interesting trains” will be the fastest and will arrive at its destination in 36 minutes, as it will have only one intermediate station, in New Belgrade.
The journey by “Regio-Express” will last 49 minutes, as it will stop at seven intermediate stations: New Belgrade, Batajnica, Nova Pazova, Stara Pazova, Indjija, Beska, Sremski Karlovci.
The slowest will be “Regio trains” which will travel 55 to 57 minutes and will stop at 11 intermediate stations: New Belgrade, Tosin Bunar, Zemun, Zemun Polje, Batajnica, Nova Pazova, Stara Pazova, Indjija, Beska, Sremski Karlovci and Petrovaradin.
The trains will develop the highest speed of 200 kilometers per hour in the part from the Batajnica station to the Karlovacki Vinogradi crossroads, in the length of 41.4 kilometers.
For the works on the third section of the high-speed railway from Novi Sad to the border crossing Kelebija with Hungary, in the length of 108.2 kilometers, which have already started, the funds are provided from a Chinese loan, and should be completed in three years. Construction will cost $ 1.2 billion.
The construction of the Belgrade-Budapest railway will cost around four billion euros in total.
It is one of the first projects within the Chinese global initiative “Belt and Road”, agreed as a joint project of China, Serbia and Hungary.
The Belgrade-Novi Sad railway has been closed since February 2019 due to reconstruction.