We have been waiting for a long time to finally be able to get to Budapest Airport by train. Unfortunately, it seems like we still have some waiting ahead of us. As it turns out, the question is no longer whether it can be done at all; the delay is more due to the fact that the airport has been privatised and the concession contract is causing problems.
Róbert Homolya, the head of the national railway lines, talked about the project involving the construction of a high-speed railway going to Budapest Airport – reports Airportal. He said that the EU funded the planning and preparation of the project, and that phase has been completed. Although there are no funds as of now to realise the railway and the connecting infrastructure, Homolya is fairly certain the EU would support this second phase of the project as well.
However, it turns out that the biggest concern is no longer whether the construction of a railway line is possible in that area.
Since the airport has been privatised, the concession contract limits the type and amount of work that can be done in and around the airport.
The company operating the airport is going to oversee the area for the next 75 years. Apparently, the company has the right to simply say no to the construction of the railway line and thus prevent it from happening. There is also no concrete date as to when the railway line could be taken into use, although there is about a 4 or 5-year-long lead time that we can expect.
Additional hindering factor
On December 10th, 2018, the Government Administration Office of Budapest withdrew the construction permit of the multi-storey car park planned to be built in front of Terminal 2 of Budapest Airport.
The plans of this car park were highly criticised as it would make the construction of the railway line much more expensive, or even impossible, and would prevent the station to be located close to the terminal, despite it benefiting all the employees and travellers.
However, the decision to withdraw the permit was rather shocking, considering the preparatory work had been all done, and the previous surface-level car park had been demolished.
Dávid Vitézy, the current director of the Hungarian Museum of Science, Technology and Transport, did not hold back when commenting on the setback hitting the plans of the car park.
“The right decision was made – this ridiculous garage would really be in the way of urban development and the 21st-century quality expansion of the airport.
The transport issues of the airport can be solved through the development of fast and reliable public transport, not by increasing the number of expensive car parks that only profit the airport.”
On the other hand, Budapest Airport declared that they were simply missing a permit from an administrative department, causing the withdrawal of the construction permit, which they hope to resolve as soon as possible.
It remains to be seen which side will win – will we get another car park, or will we finally have a railway line going to the airport?
For more news, check out this article about the new photo exhibition currently on display at Budapest Airport.
Photo: facebook/Budapest Airport