Do you have any questions? We have the answers.
Whether by phone, e-mail or on site: We receive a lot of questions from interested citizens about our project. On this page we have compiled and answered the most frequently asked questions for you.
What is the Stadt-Umland-Bahn?
The Stadt-Umland-Bahn, or StUB for short, is currently one of the largest tram projects in Germany.
As a sustainable transport solution, the StUB will in future connect the three cities of Nuremberg, Erlangen and Herzogenaurach. The three business locations are growing steadily and with them the number of jobs and residents. As a result, traffic congestion continues to increase. Less space, more noise and exhaust fumes – these are the consequences. Our goal is therefore to create an efficient, environmentally friendly, barrier-free and attractive alternative with the StUB, especially with regard to car traffic. In the future, it should open up important university, school and company locations as well as settlement areas and represent a sustainable mobility option, especially for the large number of commuters. The StUB is an important contribution to cleaner air and a better quality of life in the three cities.
Who is planning the Stadt-Umland-Bahn?
As the Zweckverband Stadt-Umland-Bahn, we are responsible for the planning, construction and operation of the Stadt-Umland-Bahn (StUB).
We work closely with various engineering and expert offices to plan the route. In addition, there is close coordination with the three cities, so that other traffic measures (e. g. bicycle paths) are also taken into account when planning the Stadt-Umland-Bahn.
Is the route already determined in detail?
The street-by-street routing of the Stadt-Umland-Bahn is available. This will now be further specified.
In January 2020, the first major formal procedure for the project was successfully completed: the so-called spatial planning procedure. In the first dialogue and planning phase, the rough route of the StUB, which was worked out together with the citizens, was examined by the government of Middle Franconia. The State planning assessment certifies that the project is a spatially compatible plan that can be continued. The rough route is now being planned in detail. The planning down to the centimeter includes, among other things, the exact location of the stops and the buildings. In addition, the stipulations and instructions of the State planning assessment are incorporated. Also during this planning phase, the focus is on dialogue with citizens, associations and organizations. This is followed by the submission of the documents for the planning approval procedure. This corresponds to the procedure for a building permit.
When will the first StUB run?
The first section of the StUB is scheduled to go into operation at the end of the 2020s.
To the schedule: The next major milestone in the project is the planning approval process, i. e. the building permit process. The documents should be submitted starting in 2024. The StUB line is expected to be divided into four construction phases. Unfortunately, it is not possible to say in advance how long the planning approval process will take. We are currently planning to start construction in the mid-2020s. The construction work should start at the “Am Wegfeld” stop. The first trams should then run at the end of the 2020s.
Planning & methodology
What is the spatial planning process? And: What was the result for the StUB?
The spatial planning procedure, or ROV as it is known, assesses structural projects that are of supra-local importance for their spatial compatibility.
The legal basis is the Bavarian State Planning Act. All public planning authorities affected by the spatially significant measure and the public are included. The various professional interests are weighed up by the State planning authority. The procedure is concluded with a state planning assessment, i. e. approval or rejection with or without conditions. The State planning authority responsible for the “Stadt-Umland-Bahn” project is the government of Middle Franconia. It has judged the project to be spatially compatible. Only in the area of the fire station in Tennenlohe was it necessary to take a closer look at the planned route. In addition, various requirements from the areas of transportation, economy (including agriculture and forestry), energy supply and open space protection were formulated in the State planning assessment, which are incorporated into further planning.
What is the planning approval process?
The plan approval procedure is comparable to a building permit procedure.
In the case of operating systems for trams, the legislator requires that these may only be built if the plan has been approved beforehand. In doing so, the public and private interests affected by the project, including environmental compatibility, must be taken into account in the context of the assessment. The Administrative Procedures Act in conjunction with the Passenger Transport Act regulates the procedure.
Are there plans to expand the StUB network beyond the current route planning?
Yes, we are, for example, currently beginning planning for an eastbound expansion.
The so-called „Ostast“ (eastern section) provides for an extension of the currently planned StUB network from Erlangen through the Schwabachtal via Neunkirchen to Eschenau. The towns and villages along the eastern section have successfully come together in the LIBOS initiative (landkreisübergreifendes interkommunales Bündnis für den Ostast der StUB) in order to convince the two districts of Erlangen-Höchstadt and Forchheim to resume planning for the eastern section. In late 2021, the two districts, the city of Erlangen and the Zweckverband signed an agreement to initiate the first planning steps.
Why does the StUB not go to Nuremberg Airport?
In the results, the forecast passenger numbers for the route from “Am Wegfeld” to the airport are not sufficient to extend the StUB there.
When examining the various routes, a connection to Nuremberg Airport was also examined in more detail. Since the airport can already be reached very easily via the Nuremberg underground and the large number of forecast StUB passengers have a destination other than the airport, a loop via the airport would mean a detour that would be of little use. However, the understandable desire for a fast connection from Erlangen to Nuremberg Airport is to be met with an efficient bus connection from the “Am Wegfeld” bus stop.
Why will the StUB travel via Sieboldstraße in Erlangen?
With a route via Sieboldstraße, more than 10,000 additional residents or jobs and study places will be reached – when compared with the original planning.
This provided for a route through Nürnberger Straße to Güterhallenstraße. Although the route is now about 640 meters longer, the journey time will only be about one and a half minutes longer. The reason for this is that the StUB would have to drive slowly when driving through Nürnberger Straße from Rathausplatz to Arcaden, as many people cycle or walk in the shopping street. In considering these aspects, the Erlangen City Council decided in favor of Sieboldstraße by a large majority.
How will the StUB cross the DB tracks in the city center of Erlangen?
The plans provide that the Stadt-Umland-Bahn coming from Henkestraße will “dive” under the DB railway line via a ramp between Goethestraße and the Güterhalle underpass with a gradient of around 5 percent.
According to the current status, a separate underpass is planned next to the Güterhalle underpass for the Stadt-Umland-Bahn, so that the vehicles (height: approx. 3.30 m) with pantographs and contact wire can pass. The Stadt-Umland-Bahn remains low along the railway tracks in the direction of the west exit of the station. A stop is planned there. This information is being further optimized and detailed in the current planning in cooperation with various planners. A great deal of care is taken when planning the structure, as this area not only contains the track systems of the Deutsche Bahn, but also various lines that need to be laid.
What will the bridge over the Regnitzgrund in Erlangen look like?
After the completion of the implementation competition “Bridge over the Regnitzgrund in Erlangen” it has been decided that the engineering office Grassl GmbH with Firmhofer + Gün-ther Architekten mbB will plan the bridge. The first draft is now available
This will be further refined together with the public and optimized until it is ready for construction. Since the Regnitzgrund in Erlangen is a landscape conservation area and local recreation area and we want to achieve a bridge design that is as environmentally friendly, architecturally appealing and as technically optimal as possible, we decided to hold an implementation competition. In the run-up to the competition, all interested citizens as well as associations and organizations were able to contribute their ideas and wishes for the design of the bridge from July 17 to 31, 2020 by means of an online platform. The suggestions were added to the list of requirements for the competition. This catalogue contains important technical, design and environmental aspects. For example, a bridge with a lane width of around 6.50 meters is required for a double-track route. The bridge must also be flood-proof and provide enough space for agricultural machinery to pass through. Environmental concerns and wildlife conservation also play an important role in the design. For example, a clear height of five meters must be maintained in the area of the main flight routes of bats.
Why is the Aurach Valley Railway not being reactivated to connect Herzogenaurach?
The Herzogenaurach City Council has commissioned the study of the reactivation of the Aurach Valley Railway. The procedure is currently ongoing.
The line 5916 of DB Netz AG from Erlangen-Bruck station via Frauenaurach to Herzogenaurach is known as the Aurach Valley Railway. The route was closed for passenger traffic in 1984. Today only the section between Erlangen and Frauenaurach is used for freight traffic. Since the Aurach Valley Railway was the former rail connection from Erlangen to Herzogenaurach, a reactivation of the disused line initially seemed practical. Accordingly, this was also checked as part of the StUB planning. Three different options for using the Aurach Valley Railway were examined:
- a reactivation as a railway line
- a combination of tram and railway (“tram-train”) and
- a use of the Aurach Valley Railway as a tram route.
On 04.24.2019, the Bavarian State Ministry for Housing, Construction and Transportation issued a statement on the reactivation of the Aurach Valley Railway, which refers to the reactivation in the form of a railway. In the statement, the State Ministry explained that the route must lead to the Erlangen train station so that there is no deterioration compared to the current bus routes that connect Herzogenaurach with the center of Erlangen. This would require an integration into the main line, which would not be easy to implement. In order to test the State Ministry’s arguments regarding the main route, we analyzed the timetable, which is based on a 20-minute interval for the trains from Herzogenaurach. This has shown that there is no timetable constellation in which no timetable conflicts with the Federal government’s Deutschland-Interval concept would arise. In addition, according to the assessment of the Bavarian State Ministry, the standardized assessment would have no chance of success due to the low development potential compared to the StUB. The Aurach Valley Railway would not create an efficient public transportation axis between the university locations and between the population centers in the west of Erlangen and the city center, nor would the company headquarters of PUMA, adidas and the Erlangen Siemens locations be connected. Furthermore, proposals for a pure rail solution ignore the transportation needs between Erlangen and the north of Nuremberg.
A “tram-train” runs partly as a train and partly as a tram. Such a mixed operation would run up to Bruck on the existing single-track line with freight traffic and from there run as a tram to Nuremberg-Nord. This type of operation would mean extensive infrastructure and vehicle conversions. In order to establish compatibility with the Nuremberg network, costs of around 50 million Euro would be incurred for the adaptation of the Nuremberg rail system alone. In the area of infrastructure, crossings and points as well as the rail head would have to be adapted. Extensive additional equipment would be required on the vehicle side, as well as conversion to a new wheel profile, which would effectively mean replacing the existing vehicles in the Nuremberg tram network.
The third alternative is to run the tram on the former Aurach Valley Railway line. Legal requirements stand in the way of converting the existing railway line into a tramway. A decommissioning procedure according to § 11 General Railway Act (AEG) would have to be carried out for the part of the Aurach Valley Railway that is still operated as a railway, In addition, the areas of railway operation areas would have to be exempted according to § 23 General Railway Act (AEG). Both procedures would have no chance of success in the case of the Aurach Valley Railway that is still operating. It can therefore be said that a legally secure planning of a tramline in the current railway area is currently not possible. Nevertheless, we reviewed three spatial variants as part of the multi-stage, formalized selection process. All three remained clearly with a negative point value and are therefore worse in the evaluation than the planning basis of the StUB.
Why was the decision made in favor of the StUB through Rathgeberstraße in Herzogenaurach? There were other variants, too.
From a traffic and technical point of view, the variant through Rathgeberstraße is the best route for the StUB.
Together with the planning offices commissioned, we have intensively examined the different variants of the route through the city of Herzogenaurach. After examining all of the criteria, the two options “Zum Flughafen” (To the airport) and “Rathgeberstraße” were included in the spatial planning process. Large-scale suggestions and ideas, for example for the routing in the “Lohhof” area, were rated significantly less favorably in comparison. As a result, the city council of Herzogenaurach decided to select the route via Rathgeberstraße, taking all aspects into account. In addition to the technical advantages, this has a greater effect on traffic, in particular due to the better connection to the Schaeffler AG industrial site. In addition, the route of the line avoids traffic conflict points, especially in the rather narrow street space between Hallertürlein and Hauptstraße. In this area there would only be room for a solution in which all oncoming traffic (cars and StUB) would have to be stopped.
Operation & traffic concept
What interval frequency is planned for the StUB?
During the day, a 10-minute interval is foreseen on weekdays.
On the section between Nuremberg and Büchenbach, additional runs are planned during rush hour. In the late hours and on Sundays and public holidays, the trams will run at reduced intervals due to the lower demand.
How many stops are planned on the route?
30 stops (including the “Am Wegfeld” stop) are currently planned, but their location has not yet been finalized.
This number can still change in the more detailed planning, especially with a view to the dialogue with the citizens.
Are the StUB and its stops handicapped-accessible?
The Passenger Transport Act stipulates that all local public transportation (ÖPNV) must be handicapped-accessible by 2022. New public transport systems, such as the StUB, must therefore always be designed to be handicapped-accessible. The aim is also, where possible and meaningful, to merge the StUB stops with the bus stops in order to enable a comfortable and handicapped-accessible transfer.
Will there be Park & Ride facilities? If so, where?
Yes, Park & Ride facilities along the route make sense and are important to enable a quick and comfortable transfer from the car to the tram.
At the “Am Wegfeld” stop, where the StUB connects to the Nuremberg tram network, there is already a Park & Ride facility. However, it should not stop there. Along the B 4, there are considerations to set up another Park & Ride facility in the area of the Nuremberg/Erlangen city limits. In the Erlangen city area, it should be possible to switch from the car to the tram at the large car park. In addition, a Park & Ride facility is planned at the level of the “Aurach” motorway service station on the city limits of Erlangen and Herzogenaurach. Here you could change from the autobahn directly to the StUB (without exiting the A3). Another Park & Ride facility is being planned in Herzogenaurach: This would be combined with the new Town Hall at the crossing at PUMA. This is the area provided for in the development plan with the field name “Reihenzach”, for which there is already a connection point at the roundabout at PUMA.
Will there be bicycle parking facilities at the bus stops?
Yes, if possible, there will be bicycle parking spaces at every stop so that you can switch directly from your bicycle to the StUB.
It is also possible to take your bike with you on the tram, as is already the case in Nuremberg.
How much will it cost to take the Stadt-Umland-Bahn?
The Stadt-Umland-Bahn is located within the tariff area of the Verkehrsverbund Großraum Nürnberg (VGN) (Transportation Association of Greater Nuremberg).
The trip will therefore cost the same as the trip by bus.
The price of a ticket depends on the route.
How many passengers can take the StUB?
Three times as many people fit in a tram as in a standard bus.
A tram is approx. 40 meters long and offers space for more than 200 people with around 70 seats and 140 standing places.
Environmental & nature conservation
Will there be any interference with nature during the construction of the Stadt-Umland-Bahn?
Unfortunately, interventions in nature and the environment cannot be completely avoided in infrastructure projects.
To ensure that the interventions are as minimal as possible, we have paid particular attention to nature and environmental protection aspects from the very beginning of planning. The route has been critically examined and further optimized by environmental planners at every stage of planning. An environmental report was drawn up for the spatial planning process, which was published with the application documents. With a view to the forthcoming planning approval process, there will also be an environmental impact assessment. Unavoidable impairments are compensated for in accordance with the Bavarian Compensation Ordinance (BayKompV) using compensatory or replacement measures. Measures are carried out on other areas that benefit nature and the landscape. Exact plans for compensation areas will be developed in the further project phases.
Will the StUB reduce car traffic?
With the route developed, 31 million car kilometers per year will be able to be shifted to public transportation. This will also reduce traffic noise. We expect the greatest relief in commuter traffic, since this is where the willingness to choose local public transportation is generally greatest and the StUB connects many locations of companies and public institutions, and therefore many places of work.
How will the sound and noise protection of the residents be ensured?
The StUB will be built as a modern rail system, which causes low noise emissions due to elastic bearings.
Measures are taken both in the area of the tracks and the vehicles in order to keep the effects of noise and vibrations as low as possible. Wetting or lubrication systems and so-called wheel absorbers can be used on the vehicle to minimize possible impairments caused by cornering noise. At places where the StUB runs parallel to the road (so-called special roadbed), it can be checked whether a design with grass tracks to dampen noise emissions is possible. Where necessary, further measures, such as soundproof windows in residential areas, are also planned. The actual measures will be determined on the basis of an acoustic expert report.
Do you have any other questions?
Contact us directly – we will be happy to answer them!