DB Regio awarded network contract in Niederrhein-Münsterland

The German transport authorities Verkehrsverbund Rhein-Ruhr (VRR) and Nahverkehr Westfalen-Lippe (NWL) have awarded DB Regio a contract for the operation of five routes on the Niederrhein-Münsterland network. In addition, VRR and NWL have ordered a total of 73 battery trains from Spanish manufacturer CAF, of the Civity platform for regional passenger trains.

In total, the Niederrhein-Münsterland network comprises seven routes, five of which will be operated by DB Regio. The contract, which runs until 2040, includes the Emscher Münsterland Express (RE14), Niederrheiner line (RB31), Ruhrort line (RB36), Emschertal line (RB43) and the Fossa Emscher Express (RE44).

Start of operation

The operation of the Niederrheiner line (Duisburg-Moers-Xanten), Ruhrort line (Oberhausen-Duisburg-Ruhrort) and the Fossa Emscher Express (Kamp-Lintfort-Moers-Duisburg-Oberhausen-Bottrop) will start in December 2025. The Emscher Münsterland Express (Essen-Steele-Bottrop-Dorsten-Borken / Coesfeld) follows one year later, in December 2026.

As the last and fifth route the Emschertal-line (Dortmund-Herne-Dorsten) will be added to the extension of DB Regio on the Niederrhein-Münsterland-network in December 2028.

Battery trains

VRR and NWL signed a contract in April with CAF Civity for the purchase of 63 Civity BEMUs. These battery trains will replace ageing and polluting diesel trains. The new trains on the Ruhrohrt line and the Emschertal line will offer 120 seats. The trains on the other lines have a capacity of 160 seats.

The new trainsets will not only be quieter, but their emissions will also be significantly reduced. DB Regio was the first operator to be selected to operate on five of the seven routes of the Niederrhein-Münsterland network. The other two lines are still in the tendering process.

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Author: Kenneth Steffers

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