Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The report points Duron flaws in Intercity – Les Echos

The committee proposes to remove some services. But his proposals would only contain the operating deficit.

Philippe Duron is currently confirming its reputation taboo breaker in the railway world. There are two years, the PS MP chaired the parliamentary committee which buried the dogma of the “all-TGV”, in force until then, and prioritized projects of transport infrastructure. He did it again Tuesday by delivering to the Government a report on the future of Intercity trains (national off-TGV lines of SNCF, formerly called Corail), which sparked a wave of indignant reactions.

The recommendations of this commission “Duron 2″ are yet far from the alarmist rumors that ran for weeks. But the report, brave, does not hesitate to bring the Intercity trains in a “sustainable financial path” here and there to advocate reductions in routes and even transfer bus lines, which remains anathema to many local elected officials and for the public enterprise unions.

Financial Abyss

The status quo, however, is untenable. Intercity transport 100,000 passengers per day, but have become a growing source of losses year after year, with an operating loss of around 400 million euros for the year 2015. And a variety of situations on lines, some being real money pits: eleven of them, reveals the commission receive public subsidy exceed € 100 per passenger, with a peak Bordeaux-Lyon (over 275 euros per passenger in 2013)

In this very diverse landscape, the commission is engaged in a line by line analysis, in particular according to attendance and existing transport offer to deliver its recommendations. Some lines or segments are considered “high potential” as Paris-Clermont-Ferrand, Paris-Orléans-Tours, Nantes, Lyon, Bordeaux, Marseille or Bordeaux-Nantes. The Duron report proposes to strengthen the offer with such a timing on time or commissioning of new rolling stock, to attract new travelers.

“trolleys oversized”

Conversely, on other line segments, “analysis of traffic volumes and offers from alternative mobility reveals that the service on certain sections surdimentionnée is now recognized in terms of flow “. Clearly, the few travelers on the trains do not justify public expenditure to circulate. The committee then recommends a reduction in the number of stops or trains in circulation.

On a half-dozen sections, serving in Intercités is no longer justified, even deems the report. This does not mean to remove any rail service, but rather to rationalize the routes in question, which are also ensured by TGV and regional trains (TER).

Finally, the Committee, recommends the “transfer road” , that is to say, to replace trains by buses on the lines Toulouse -Hendaye, Clermont-Ferrand and Beziers. It also suggests for the South Branch of the cross Bordeaux-Lyon.

night trains deletions

To night trains (the most unprofitable with Intercités quarter deficit to 3% of trips), the report is more radical and proposes to maintain the routes “that does not have an adequate supply alternative” . , between Paris and Briancon, Rodez, Toulouse and Latour-de-Carol

Philippe Duron expected: its recommendations have sparked a barrage, it either by trade unions (who report “a purely accounting perspective” ), or the President of the Pays de la Loire Jacques Auxiette which regret “right diagnosis but the wrong conclusions “.

Yet the direction of the station has no doubt due also to frown when reading the report. For successful proposals by the Commission are far less radical than the scenario it had submitted to him at his hearing and that suggested closures Significantly more lines.

Suddenly The return to a “sustainable financial path” in the coming years remains very concerning: the committee states that the application of its proposals would stabilize the operating deficit Intercités to … -270 000 000 by the year 2023. That is to say, not very far from his level there are two or three years.

The report of the Duron Committee


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