Rail and multi-modal transport

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

mode - rail, place - europe, policy - sustainable


Rail transport policy, EU, Intermodal, Multimodal, Energy, Case Studies


This paper elaborates on the definitions of inter and multi-modal transport, as well as their differences in terms of performance. A survey of the barriers, both internal and external, to an efficient intermodal transport is included followed by an analysis of the advantages and disadvantages of combining rail transport with the other transport modes. Transhipment technologies for efficient freight service and some examples of freight rail corridors between sea and inland terminals are presented. The integration between air and rail transport is discussed and the potential synergies between air and high-speed rail services are emphasised. The paper concludes with a discussion on energy use for sustainable rail performance.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Elsevier, copyright remains with them.


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