Upgraded line Subotica – Sombor

The Sombor – Subotica line is in use, and no new alignment is proposed. The line is in the Bačka region, in the south of the Pannonian Plain. The region is in theory ideal for rail transport, but that requires some new lines, and upgrading of the mainly single-track existing lines. (See the list of proposals for the regional lines).

The alignment would not change, but its place in the rail network would. At present, Sombor (population 51 000) is on the secondary international line from Subotica to Osijek. It is a terminus for services from Beograd (Belgrade) – its position in Serbia is peripheral. That would change substantially with the proposed high-speed line from Budapest to Novi Sad via Szekszárd and Baja. The high-speed line (HSL) would run north-south, mostly on new alignment between Baja and Novi Sad. In Sombor, it would use the existing alignment through the station only.

HSL and bypass at Sombor, click to enlarge…

New high-speed line Budapest - Baja - Novi Sad

At Subotica (population 100 000), the upgraded line would connect to the proposed HSL from Budapest via Kecskemét. South of Subotica, this HSL would follow the existing main line to Beograd. An upgraded Sombor – Subotica line would therefore connect two HSL stations. It is also a logical complement, to the earlier proposed Baja – Subotica line.

At Sombor, most inter-regional trains would continue on an upgraded line to Vinkovci, connecting to more high-speed lines: from Zagreb and Vienna (Wien), on to Novi Sad and Belgrade (Beograd).

The new significance of the Sombor – Subotica line would justify upgrading, to a double-track electrified regional line. The line was built under the Austro-Hungarian Empire, as part of the the Alföld – Fiume line. This section was not cut by the 1920 borders: it is entirely within Serbia, in the Vojvodina region. The map below is from the Austro-Hungarian military map of circa 1910, showing the original railway network. The line is 59 km long.

Click to enlarge…

The line runs through flat countryside: the highest and lowest points differ by only 40 m. Like several others in the region, it is almost straight. It passes through only two municipalities, with a combined population of 245 000. The only large village on the line is Bajmok (population 8500), about half-way along the line. Three other villages might be large enough to justify a station: Svetozar Miletić (3000), Aleksa Šantić (2000), and Tavankut (3000). The smaller rural stations, originally typical of such lines, would be closed.

Upgraded line Subotica – Sombor

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