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Major findings concerning road and rail transport

Cross Alpine Freight Transport 01
(c) BMVIT - click to enlarge


  • Brenner is still the most important Alpine crossing, approaching 2 million vehicles in 2004; with 31.5 million tonnes, it covers nearly one fourth of total Alpine road transport.
  • The hierarchy among other passes has been strongly modified : Mont-Blanc, which was the second most important pass in 1994, has become a rather minor passage, whereas Ventimiglia replaced it in 2004 as the second most important pass in terms of number of vehicles. At Gotthard, there has been a decrease of the number of vehicles together with an increase of tonnages.
  • As a result the split of road tonnages by country of Alpine crossing has changed from 44% (France), 8% (Switzerland) and 48% (Austria) to 32% (France), 10% (Switzerland) and 58% (Austria).


  • Over the entire Alpine arc the share of rail in total tonnages has continuously decreased, from 38% in 1994 to 34% in 1999 and 33% in 2004.
  • This share highly differs depending on the country of Alpine crossing: in 2004 it amounts to 64% in Switzerland, 31% in Austria and 14% in France. In every country it has decreased over the last decade.
  • Gotthard is the most important Alpine crossing concerning rail transport (15.6 million tonnes), followed by Brenner and Semmering with around 10 million tonnes each.
  • The split of rail transport between countries with Alpine crossings has shifted from 17% (France), 35% (Switzerland) and 48% (Austria) in 1994 to 11% (France), 36% (Switzerland) and 53% (Austria).
Modal Split at Alpine Crossing Freight Transport 01
(c) BMVIT, click to enlarge


tabel: > Development of the road traffic flows by Alpine crossing
          > Development of the total flows by Alpine country and mode
          > Modal Split, Share of Rail in tonnages

copyright by BMVIT
Bundesministerium für Verkehr, Bau und Stadtentwicklung (Germany) Ministère de l'Écologie, de l'Energie, du Développement durable et de l'Aménagement du territoire (France) Ministero delle Infrastrutture e dei Trasporti (Italy) Bundesminsiterium für Innovation, Verkehr und Technologie (Austria) Eidgenössisches Departement für Umwelt, Verkehr, Energie und Kommunikation (Switzerland) Ministrstvo za promet (Slovenia) Directorate General Energy and Transport