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NextGenerationEU
News article17 June 2024Directorate-General for Communication2 min read

The Right Track: Renewed Rail Infrastructure in Slovenia

To boost social and territorial cohesion and accelerate the green and digital transitions, NextGenerationEU has been offering a welcome lift to various community amenities across Europe. Slovenia’s modernised Domžale railway station is among many ambitious projects to avail of funds through the €800 billion stimulus package, with wheelchair-accessible facilities and a pedestrian-safe underpass among its core priorities. 

Located just 12 kilometres from the Slovenian capital, Domžale is part of Ljubljana's vital commuter belt, but the Kamnik railway line had deteriorated somewhat in recent years. A €7.2 million investment through NextGenerationEU offered a chance to technically upgrade Domžale station and improve accessibility and safety. To learn more, we spoke with Site Manager Zoran Račič and commuter Mojca Robas. 

How are you linked to the project and has it been a success?  

ZR: I have worked for Slovenian Railways for 38 years, and I helped coordinate logistics and arrange alternative bus services for commuters during the refurbishments. For me, safety has been the project's greatest achievement. People often used to cross the tracks on foot, but the new underpass has made access more secure, particularly in this age of mobile phones and distractions. 

MR: I live in Domžale and take the train to work every day. The new station is a more modern, pleasant place to be, but I agree that safety and accessibility have been the greatest improvements. The underpass and wheelchair-accessible lifts allow easy access for people with reduced mobility, which is key to greater inclusiveness. 

“The underpass and the wheelchair-accessible lifts allow easy access for people with reduced mobility, which is key to greater inclusiveness.”  

–  Mojca Robas, Local Resident 

Has the project made a lasting impact locally? 

ZR: I hope the Domžale renovation encourages decision makers, locally and nationally, to push for more railway station refurbishments elsewhere. Infrastructure is so important for communities like ours and the whole Kamnik line needs work. In the long term, projects like these pay dividends, as they create local jobs and bring young people back to the sector. 

MR: I also believe that better infrastructure and increased connectivity can attract new investment and create jobs. This benefits the local community and economy, boosts mobility, and attracts people to the area. In the long run, projects like these can also reduce traffic congestion and improve air quality, so I think it will have a positive, lasting impact. 

“In the long term, projects like these pay dividends, as they create local jobs and bring young people back to the sector.” 

–  Zoran Račič, Site Manager at Slovenian Railways 

The Domžale railway renovation is but one of many projects undertaken through Slovenia's €2.7 billion Recovery and Resilience Plan (RRP) under NextGenerationEU, but its local impact is palpable and significant. With a focus on improved safety, accessibility and technology, the result is a modern, inclusive train station that finally meets the needs of local residents.

Details

Publication date
17 June 2024
Author
Directorate-General for Communication
Location
  • Slovenia