The main task of the group is to formulate the technical, infrastructural and transportation-related demands connected with the project including the location of the stations and possible speed limitations. According to the Slovak Ministry of Transport the first meeting should take place in 2018. The prepared material would be the first step towards a feasibility study.
Karolína Ducká, spokesperson of the ministry emphasized that the project is ambitious and financially demanding. The plans were announced last week after the meeting in Štrbské Pleso. The capitals of Bratislava, Warsaw, Prague and Budapest should be interconnected with the railway, while Brno and Kraków are also included in the project as housing potential railway stations. The initiative came from Hungary, the country already secured 5 million euros for working out the plans.
The management of the project is one of the priorities of the Slovak presidency of the Visegrad Four which started in July, 2018. The politicians believe the high-speed rail network could provide an alternative to air transport and the time to travel from Prague to Bratislava could be reduced to one and half hours.
Rastislav Cenký from the Institute of Transport and Economy (IDH) was skeptical about the rentability of the project, the expert believes that Slovakia should rather focus on short-term investments regarding the state of the railways.