The Netherlands: Track Construction on Maasvlakte 2 in Progress

The first 100-metre track has been constructed on Maasvlakte 2. It is mainly to test how quickly and how much sand blows in. Now that this is known, 12 kilometres of new track is being constructed. The first trains will start running at the end of next year.

At Maasvlakte 2 rail traffic is being given a lot of space to grow, as an environmentally friendly alternative to container transport by road. 480 trains will be able to transport freight daily via the 160-kilometre-long Betuweroute to the German border, ready for further distribution within Europe. Currently approximately nine percent of all freight leaves the port via railway and that needs to become 20 percent in the future. At the end of 2011, construction will start on the track along the outside edge of Maasvlakte 2 up to the Euromax Terminal in the Northwest corner of the existing Maasvlakte. APM Terminals and Rotterdam World Gateway will each have their own rail terminal for optimal connection.


According to plans, the first goods trains will run across Maasvlakte 2 in October 2012. By then, parts of the track will have already been lying on new land for a year, ready for use. This is a reason to test now whether the elements and sand-drifts will influence the open tracks in the sand flat and whether the track will continue to meet ProRail requirements. In January 2011, a trial section of track of 100 metres was constructed for this. The trial section was inspected in June. The conclusion is that anti-sand-drift measures are needed. The PUMA Consortium is currently investigating the options to protect the track against the forces of sand.


Source: Maasvlakte 2, July 17, 2011