Moers – Kempen regional line

The old Krefelder Eisenbahn had rail lines from Moers to Krefeld via Hüls, and from Hüls to Kempen. Its alignment south-west of Moers station has been built over: the section from Hülser Berg to Krefeld is a museum line. The other local line west of Moers, the former Moerser Kreisbahn line to Sevelen, via Neukirchen and Vluyn, is intact.

The proposal is to connect a re-opened line to Neukirchen and Vluyn, with the museum line at Hülser Berg, via a new line passing Tönisberg. The abandoned alignment Hüls – Kempen would be re-opened: some new construction and tunnels would be needed there.

At present, Moers (population 107 000) has only one rail service, along the Niederrheinstrecke from Xanten to Duisburg. The proposals here would create regional lines to the north (to Kamp-Lintfort), and west (Geldern and Kempen). At Moers station, there would be interchange with the proposed new line across the Rhine to Oberhausen.

Click to enlarge: the Moers – Vluyn section is shared with the Geldern line…

From Moers to Vluyn trains would use the proposed line to Geldern, with stations in Moers at Repelener Strasse and Am Jostenhof, in Neukirchen, at the redeveloped Niederberg mine, and in Vluyn (Vluyner Südring).

The new section would start after Vluyn station, beside the business park Am Hoschenhof. The line would cross the A40 Autobahn and a small lake: a viaduct is unavoidable here. It would then pass Tönisberg. The S-curve alignment is indicative: it is necessary because the line must avoid the hill at the end of the ridge, Achterberg. That also makes it difficult to place a station near Tönisberg itself: the location shown is 1500 m from the centre of the village, at the end of Neufelder Strasse.

The new section would be 5-6 km long. It would connect to the museum line, west of its last halt (at Rennstieg). A new halt (for summer and weekends only) would serve the recreational forest at Hülser Berg. (This is just 8 km from the centre of Krefeld). From there, the existing line to Hüls would be upgraded.

In Hüls, there would be a station on the Klever Strasse, exactly where the museum train is crossing on this aerial photo. Tram 44 should be extended, to connect with the line here. (The original Hüls station was further south, on the Kempener Strasse. The branch to Kempen also started there).

To join the old Kempen alignment, a new section is needed, starting just after the crossing with the Klever Strasse. It would pass some houses, at the northern edge of Hüls. The line would cross the B9 road, and join the original alignment, now a farm road. Further on, the alignment is now a rural road, the Kempener Landstrasse: the rail line would be relocated beside it. Passing St. Hubert, there would be a station at the original location, at the end of the Bahnstrasse.

West of this point, the original alignment was cut by the Kempen ring road, and built over for commercial use, east of Kempen station. A tunnel is now the only way to reach this station. It could either follow the road into Kempen, and approach the station at right angles (shown in blue), or follow the old surface alignment, and end parallel to the station platforms (red). Either way, it would have to pass under new commercial buildings. Demolition for a cut-and-cover tunnel is probably simpler than a bored tunnel.

Kempen station is on the line to Kleve, the Linksniederrheinische Strecke. (Via the proposed Kleve – Elten line, it would be extended to Arnhem).

The new line would be about 24 km long, from Moers to Kempen, including shared sections. As with the Moers – Geldern line, it would have a light-rail type of service, with trains every 15-20 minutes. With two services, the Moers – Vluyn section would have trains every 7-10 minutes.

Moers – Kempen regional line

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