Inland Waterways Network of Europe


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This PDF includes the inland waterways network of those countries Finland,Romania,Germany,Belgium,Netherland,Austria, Czech Republic, France, Polan, Switzerland.

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Inland Waterways Network of Europe

  2. 2. INLAND WATERWAYS FINLAND The Finnish waterways are made up of four main networks of lakes and connecting navigations, totalling 7842km, of which 814km are open to vessels drawing 4m or more. Commercial traffic amounted to about 3 million tonnes in 2007, while about half a million passengers were moved on the inland waterways. Almost half of the above length is accounted for by the Saimaa or River Vuoksi basin, which extends from Lappeenranta in the south-east to Nurmes and Iisalmi in the north (half way to the Arctic Circle!). This lake system was connected to the Gulf of Finland through the Saimaa Canal, first built in 1856 for a maximum capacity of about 300 tonnes. The so-called second building began in 1927 and was almost 40% complete when the Winter War (1939-40) interrupted works. It was planned for vessels of 1000 tonnes. World War II stopped all works. The third building started in 1963 and the canal was opened to traffic in August 1968. It was planned for vessels of 1600 tonnes, but today vessels of maximum dimensions can carry 2500 tonnes. Finland leased the Soviet
  3. 3. (today Russian) part of the canal in 1963 for 50 years. The lease is thus to be renewed before 2013. In the Lake Saimaa area there are about 800km of deep water channels offering a draught of 4.2m. The system has been extended by the 70km long Nilsiä route (north of Kuopio) consisting of two new locks in Juankoski, linking with one existing lock through to lake Syväri. This route, designed for pleasure boats and small passenger vessels, was opened in 2002. The Finnish Transport Agency is examining technical solutions for lengthening the navigation season on the Saimaa Canal, perhaps eventually keeping it open to navigation all year round. AUSTRİA Austria is served by the Danube over a total distance of 329km (km 2201.75 to 1872.70) of which 20.2km is shared with Germany at the upstream end and 7.5km with the Slovak Republic at the downstream end. Most of this length has been developed for high-capacity navigation (Class VIb), with a pair of locks 230m by 24m at eac h of the nine hydropower dams. However, free- flow conditions prevail downstream of Melk for about 40km, and below the last Austrian lock at Vienna Freudenau. The Danube thus remains a challenging waterway for yachtsmen, who will enjoy the comfort of the ma ny boat harbours. The Danube Canal in Vienna is the only other navigation in Austria. It is a former arm of the river, hemmed in between attractive stone quays through the city. It is entered on the right bank at km 1933.70, through Nussdorf lock, and rejoins the Danube at km 1919.40. Total freight movements on the Danube in Austria amount to about 2.4 million tonnes per year, of which roughly half is domestic and half international.…
  4. 4. CZECH REPUBLIC The Czech Government was for long committed to developme nt of the transport potential of its navigable rivers the Elbe (Labe) and Vltava, both of which were developed for high-capacity inland shipping from about 1900. The route initially opened to Prague was designed for 700-tonne barges drawing up to 1.8m, with pairs of 11m wide locks. Between the wars Czechoslovakia continued the Elbe canalisation from the Vltava confluence upstream to Kolin, with locks 85 by 12m to accommodate 1000-tonne barges. From the 1960s, new 190 by 12m locks for push-tows were gradually added, and the upper limit of navigation was extended to Chvaletice and Pardubice. However, navigation is for the time being limited to Chvaletice, pending completion of the new lock and weir at Prelouc. The Danube-Oder-Elbe Water Corridor project for water management and navigation remains alive, thanks to an intense lobbying effort in 2009, after years of government backtracking under pressure from the environmentalist lobby. The Czech waterway authorities have expressed their gratitude to Inland Waterways International for assistance in rejecting a parliamentary motion which would have led to abandonment of all prospects of building the Danube-Oder-Elbe waterways in the Czech Republic.
  5. 5. These canals may well not be built for many years, but the authorities and moderate members of the Green Party believe that it makes sense to retain national ownership of the land, so that the waterways can be built as soon as the economic, environmental a nd funding climate is right. A week before the vote in July 2009, IWI President Dave Ballinger wrote to the Prime Minister and seven ministers of the Czech Government, urging them "to accept the challenge of ensuring that future waterway or canal developments and improvements are done in a manner that is acceptable to the Czech Republic and the majority of its citizens. With a history of waterway engineering to the highest standards, the Czech Republic could develop and showcase the solutions proposed today, engineered and natural, in order to mitigate environmental impacts, while at the same time acknowledging the strategic and economic importance of inland water transport." This letter posted in Canada, arriving on the Prime Minister's desk a few days before the vote, helped to obtain this important result ROMANIA Rumania is by far the most important riparian state on the Danube, extending from km 1075 to the Black Sea. It is second only to Germany in tonnage carried (4M tonnes p.a.), followed closely by Hungary. The river forms the border with Serbia down to km 845.65, then with Bulgaria down to km 374.10. From km 134.14 to 79.17 the left bank is occupied by Moldavia over 1km and Ukraine for 54km. The Rumanian and Bulgarian Governments have planned improvements to secure better navigable conditions for inland shipping. Recreational boating is slow to develop, and visiting boats report that conditions remain difficult in this recovering country. Built between 1975 and 1984, the Danube-Black Sea canal links the Danube (south of the town of Cernavoda) with the Black Sea (at Agigea - Constanta South) and shortens the shipping route to Constanta by about 400 km.…
  6. 6. FRANCE France has the longest waterway network in Europe outside Russia, with a total of 8800km of navigable rivers and canals. The waterways evolved in three main stages (excluding here the main rivers, which have always offered a degree of navigability in their natural state): Stage 1 - Original construction beginning with the Briare and Midi cana ls in the 17th century and continuing into the 19th century, with variable dimensions, but mostly designed for vessels carrying less than 150 tonnes. Stage 2 - The first modernisation, to 300-tonne canal standards, voted by the National Assembly in 1879 at the initiative of Charles de Freycinet, Minister of Public Works. This extensive plan involved construction of new canals and upgrading of the main existing routes to minimum lock dimensions 38.50 by 5.20m, for a navigable draught of 1.80m and bridge clearance of 3.70m. New alignments were built on some canals with elimination of locks, lowering of summit levels, new locks and aqueducts. Stage 3 - The current modernisation to the European Class IV (or V) standards, since 1953. Roughly a fifth of the total length of the network has thus been upgraded, essentially the main rivers and the Dunkerque-Escaut Waterway, with new alignments and new high-capacity locks…
  7. 7. GERMANY Germany provides, with Russia, the most vivid demonstration in Europe of how the economic benefits of naturally navigable rivers can be extended over a vast territory by bold planning and construction of new waterways, starting in the late 19th century and continuing as we enter the 21st. The way the network has been developed, and its vital importance for the economy, carrying about 235 million tonnes (65 billion tonne-km) of freight each year, provide the backdrop for the remarkable growth in recreational use of the waterways since the 1960s. Regional zooms in preparation (see also the European Waterways Map under Publications)… The Elbe Aqueduct was opened in Magdeburg on October 10, 2003. High-capacity barges and push-tows now proceed from the Mittelland Canal to the Elbe-Havel Canal and Berlin without having to drop down to the river Elbe, which offers limited depths.
  8. 8. NETHERLAND The Netherlands has the densest network of inland waterways in Europe. About 6000km of rivers and canals, many of the latter serving drainage as well as navigation, form a complex system serving all parts of the country, but with widely varying characteristics, from the tranquil 17th century trekvaarten to the extraordinarily busy Amsterdam-Rhine Canal, completed in 1953. The main commercial waterways (Class IV and higher), with a total length of 2200km, account for about 40% of international freight movements in the Netherlands and 20% of domestic freight. These routes are so busy that one of the key issues in development of Dutch waterways today is the provision of alternative routes and navigation structures for recreational navigation. The busiest locks on the network see more than 50 000 boats passing per year. Planning to provide the best overall service to both commercial and recreational users is complicated by the large number of separate waterway authorities. The main network is state-owned and operated by the Rijkswaterstaat (address below), but the smaller waterways, potentially offering attractive routes for recreational boating, are managed by many different provincial authorities or drainage boards, for which navigation is often a low priority…
  9. 9. POLAND The network of Polish waterways, comprising navigable canals and canalised or free- flowing rivers, as well as a number of interconnected lakes, is nearly 3650km long. Waterways of international importance (classes IV and Va) represent only 1.9 and 3.0% of this length respectively. Most waterways (59%) are Class I, for a carrying capacity limited to 180 tonnes at a loading depth of 1.4m. In view of these restrictions, waterborne traffic accounts for less than 1% of all inland freight movements in Poland. The main commercial waterways are the Oder, the Vistula and the Vistula-Oder waterway. The rivers Bug and Wieprc are no longer navigated to any significant extent. The most important waterways for tourism are the Augustów and Warmia (or Elblanski) Canals. The Slesinski Canal is also potentially of great interest, joining the Warta at its upstream limit of navigation to the Bydgoszcz Canal…
  10. 10. SWITZERLAND Switzerland's interest in inland navigation is by no means limited to the Upper Rhine and the spectacular lakes, many of which have regular passenger services. One of the earliest attempts to build a summit level canal in Europe took place between Lake Neuch”tel and Lake Geneva, and an association is still campaigning for construction of a high-capacity Rhine-Rhone waterway on this route, also using the canalised river Aare. Sections of the Upper Rhine may be used by powered craft, but there are many weirs and hydropower plants, and the high waterfall at Schaffhausen. Canalisation with 12 new locks and a 650m long tunnel has been planned since 1851, but such a scheme is unlikely to be approved in the short term. The first 5 locks (above the existing two at Birsfelden and Rheinfelden) would open up navigation to the Aare confluence at Koblenz…
  11. 11. BELGIUM Belgium has a dense network of inland waterways crossing the country's two regions Flanders and Wallonia from east to west and north to south. Much of the total length of about 1600km is now a unified high-capacity network thanks to the vision of Gustave Willems, a former minister of transport and president of PIANC, who in the post-WWII years conceived and promoted vigorously the plan to rebuild all the main routes to European Class IV standard. This massive undertaking has recently been completed, 50 years later, with opening in 2002 of the last link on the Canal du Centre, including the giant 73m high barge lift at StrépyThieu. The old line, with its four hydraulic lifts now listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, is being kept open for recreational boating and trip boats…
  12. 12. CLASSIFICATION OF EUROPEAN INLAND WATERWAYS The Classification of European Inland Waterways are a set of standards for interoperability of large navigable waterways forming part of the Trans- European Inland Waterway network within Continental Europe and Russia. It was created by the European Conference of Ministers of Transport (ECMT;French: Conférence européenne des ministres des Transports, CEMT) in 1992, hence the range of dimensions are also referred to as CEMT Class I–VII. The size for each waterway is limited by the dimensions of the structures including the locks and boat lifts on the route Class I corresponds to the historical Freycinet gauge decreed in France during 1879. The larger river classification sizes are focused on the carriage ofintermodal containers in convoys of barges propelled by a push-tug. Most of the canals of the United Kingdom have smaller locks and would fall below the dimensions in the European classification system. In 2004, the standards were extended with four smaller sizes RA–RD covering recreational craft, which had originally been developed and proposed via PIANC.[2] The proposal to add the recreational sizes was adopted by United Nations Economic Commission for Europe resolution 52
  13. 13. Classification Tonnage (t) Length (m) Breadth (m) Draught (m) Air Draft (m) Notes RA 5.5 2.00 0.50 2.00 "Open boat" RB 9.5 3.00 1.00 3.25 Cabin cruiser RC 15.0 4.00 1.50 4.00 "Motor yacht" RD 15.0 4.00 2.10 30.00 "Sailing boat" I 250–400 38.5 5.05 1.80–2.20 3.70 "Péniche" II 400–650 50.0–55.0 6.60 2.50 3.70–4.70 Euro-barge III 650–1,000 67.0–80.0 8.20 2.50 4.70 "Gustav Koenigs" IV 1,000–1,500 80.0–85.0 9.50 2.50 4.50; 6.70 "Johann Welker" Va 1,500–3,000 95.0–110.0 11.40 2.50–4.50 4.95; 6.70; 8.80 "Large Rhine" Vb 3,200–6,000 172.0– 185.0 11.40 2.50–4.50 4.95; 6,70; 8,80 1×2 convoy VIa 3,200–6,000 95.0–110.0 22.80 2.50–4.50 6.70; 8.80 2×1 convoy VIb 6,400–12,000 185.0– 195.0 22.80 2.50–4.50 6.70; 8.80 2×2 convoy VIc 9,600–18,000 270–280 22.80 2.50–4.50 8.80 2×3 convoy
  14. 14. 9,600–18,000 195–200 VII 33.00–34.20 2.50–4.50 8.80 3×2 convoy 14,500– 27,000 33.00–34.20 2.50–4.50 8.80 3×3 convoy 285