Transportation in Germany: A historical overview

Paul Baron


This article gives an overview of the present transport situation in the Federal Republic of Germany in light of historical developments. It shows that most of the present problems have their roots in earlier political decisions and that billions of U.S. dollars were and will be wasted for prestigious investment projects of which the economic feasibility was never correctly assessed. This article also deals with the issue of transforming two national railway companies into one commercial enterprise and delegating the responsibility for national railway public transport to local authorities. The author takes a critical view of the past and present developments. In some cases, he has simplified the issues due to space limitations. Some points of lesser interest to an international readership have been omitted for the same reason.