Reopening of the Nancy-Contrexéville (Grand Est region, France) railway line

Transdev regional train Photo Dietmar Denger

Photo ©Dietmar Denger

The consortium comprising NGE, Transdev and Banque des Territoires (Caisse des Dépôts Group) has been awarded the public service concession for the Nancy-Contrexéville railroad line by the Grand Est region.

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    On Tuesday June 4, 2024, Franck Leroy, President of the Grand Est Region, Thierry Mallet, Chairman and CEO of Transdev, Edouard Hénaut, CEO of Transdev France, Magali Debatte, Regional Director Grand Est Banque des Territoires, Thierry Bodard, President of NGE Concessions, were welcomed by Yves Séjourné, Mayor of Mirecourt, and Franck Perry, Mayor of Vittel, Vice-President of the Vosges Departmental Council, to officialize the reopening of regional line 14. 

    This event marks the culmination of several years' efforts to get the line back on track.

    It is the first rail contract awarded by the Grand Est region since the opening up to competition, and the first contract in France to be operated under a new model, enabling a single service provider to operate the rail service and manage the rail infrastructure.

    Dans la gare de Vittel, de gauche à droite Magali Debatte Directrice régionale Banque publique des Territoires Thibaud Phillips, Vice Président Transport Région Franck Leroy Président de la Région Grand Est Thierry Bodard, Président de NGE Concessions Franck Perry maire de Vittel Yves Séjourné, maire de Mirecourt Luc Gerecke, maire de Contrexéville Thierry Mallet Edouard Hénaut Alix

    Vittel train station, from left to right : Magali Debatte (Regional Director, Banque publique des Territoires), Thibaud Phillips (Vice President, Transport Région), Franck Leroy (President, Région Grand Est), Thierry Bodard (President, NGE Concessions), Franck Perry (Mayor of Vittel), Yves Séjourné (Mayor of Mirecourt), Luc Gerecke (Mayor of Contrexéville), Thierry Mallet (Group Chairman and CEO), Edouard Hénaut (Managing Director Transdev France), Alix Lecadre (Rail Director Transdev France).

    Closed since 2016, this essential regional line will be brought back to life thanks to a 22-year partnership between NGE Concessions, Transdev and Banque des Territoires (Caisse des Dépôts Group). This reopening represents a crucial step in the opening up to competition, as well as a powerful symbol for the attractiveness of the western Vosges region. Soon, there will be 30 daily return trips between Nancy and Contrexéville.

    Reopening a line is a reaffirmation of our commitment to the regions, their accessibility and their attractiveness. It is also the mark of a Region committed to providing its inhabitants with transportation services everywhere and for everyone. Today, this relaunch paves the way for the rehabilitation of other lines, with the aim of opening up the entire Grand Est rail network to competition by 2033.

    Franck Leroy, President of the Grand Est Region

    This is a new page in the history of Line 14, a sign of confidence that the Région Grand Est has placed in us, and very good news for Transdev. Thanks to our international experience, particularly in Germany and Sweden with commuter trains, we'll be able to help revive the Nancy - Contrexéville line. Mobility is an essential topic in suburban and rural areas. Transdev is proud to contribute to the revitalization of these areas in the Grand Est region, by working with its partners NGE and Banque des Territoires to renovate the infrastructure, provide rail services and operate the line, ensuring quality service from 2027.

    Edouard Hénaut, Managing Director Transdev France

    Banque des Territoires is delighted to have been chosen, along with Transdev, a subsidiary of Caisse des Dépôts Group, and NGE, by the Grand Est Region to reopen line 14, serving the Vittel and Contrexéville area from Nancy. For the renovation, operation and maintenance of this line, the local authority has opted for an innovative arrangement that is unprecedented in regional rail in France. The Grand Est region has embarked on a resolute policy of developing its own rail services, in particular by regenerating its regional lines, which contribute to enhancing the accessibility and attractiveness of its regions. We are delighted to support this ambition for more sustainable mobility and greater regional cohesion, in line with our strategic priorities.

    Magali Debatte, Regional Manager Grand Est Banque des Territoires


    The Grand Est region has clearly expressed its desire to revitalize line 14, and we are proud to have been chosen to support it in this objective of developing sustainable, low-carbon mobility in the region. This reopening is in line with the promotion of operator diversity called for by the Loi d’Orientation des Mobilités, and we are convinced that such projects will contribute to developing the mobility offer and the role of rail operators for the benefit of users. Alongside Transdev and Banque des Territoires, backed by the expertise of its subsidiaries NGE Concessions and TSO, NGE has seized this first opportunity, and we are ready to position ourselves for future operations.

    Thierry Bodard, Chairman of the concession company and Chairman of NGE Concessions

    The agreement will be signed in June, and will come into force on July 1, 2024. Comprising NGE Concessions (50%), Transdev (20%), la Banque des Territoires (Caisse des Dépôts Group) (30%), the concession company is working alongside the Grand Est Region to reopen the Nancy – Contrexéville line, offering a comprehensive solution covering the financing, design-build and maintenance of the rail line, as well as the operation of the rail service, with commitments to a high level of service within the framework of a 22-year public service concession, including three and a half years of construction work.

    Three and a half years of works for €150m

    Nine NGE Group subsidiaries will be involved in the design-build phase. TSO, leader, TSO SIGNALISATION, OFFROY, SAGES RAIL for the railway part, MULLER TP, NGE GC and SLD TP for earthworks, networks and civil engineering. NGE INGENIERIE is responsible for the design, alongside SETEC and JFS Architectes. NGE will also be in charge of major maintenance and renewal for the duration of the concession.

    The three and a half years of works will consist in particular of track regeneration and renewal of the railway platform, rehabilitation work on the various engineering and hydraulic structures, installation of an automated and centralized signaling system, safety work on level crossings and modernization of the stops.

    A rail hub will be created in Mirecourt, housing the maintenance and storage site as well as the concession’s operating premises.

    All this work, which represents up to 300 jobs, will be carried out in cooperation with regional economic players and with minimal environmental impact.

    Operating costs over the concession period estimated at €14 M p.a.

    The operating company (75% Transdev Rail, 25% NGE Exploitation) will be responsible for the operational management of train movements, maintenance and safety on the line. This represents 65 permanent local jobs, including 23 train drivers. Around 30 round trips a day will be operated between Nancy, Pont-Saint-Vincent and Contrexéville, with a strong commitment to service levels and, in particular, punctuality. As a result, from December 12, 2027, Contrexéville will be just one hour and 10 minutes away from the heart of Nancy, with 30 daily round trips, compared with 6 before the line was closed in 2016.

    Key figures for the Nancy-Contrexéville line

    • 75 km of line regenerated and modernized
    • 1 railway hub created at Mirecourt
    • 550,000 passengers expected at opening
    • 1h10 between Nancy and Contrexéville
    • 30 round trips per day on the line :
      • including 16 return trips from Nancy to Pont-Saint-Vincent
      • including 14 return trips from Nancy to Contrexéville (which also pass through Pont-Saint-Vincent on the way to Contrexéville and return to Nancy)
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