The opportunities and benefits of the new S4 line
Regional rail services between Hamburg, Ahrensburg and Bad Oldesloe have seen a steady increase in passenger numbers in recent years. Trains on this route have already reached more or less their full capacity. Local, regional and long-distance services all use the same track and, as a result, they often impede each other, leading to delays and cancellations. In addition, travellers have to change trains to get to destinations within Hamburg. This is only possible at the city's main station, which simply adds to the congestion there. It is precisely these problems that the S4 will alleviate.
The current situation
- Rising passenger numbers, trains at maximum capacity
- Regional, long-distance and freight services all use the same line, leading to delays and cancellations
- Changing at Hamburg's main station is the only way to get to many destinations within the city
- The main station's regional and long-distance platforms cannot accommodate more passengers or trains
The video explains why the new S-Bahn is necessary – and it gives you a first impression of the new line!
What we're doing
We are responding by constructing the S4. This new S-Bahn line will provide the region's inhabitants with better local transport between Hamburg and Bad Oldesloe. We are constructing two additional tracks along the existing line. They will carry the S4 once this work is finished, replacing the RB 81 regional service. It often suffers from disruptions due to the mixing of local and long-distance trains on the current line. Regional train RE 80 between Hamburg and Lübeck will continue to operate. We are also building a total of five new stations in Schleswig-Holstein and Hamburg.
Further information is available in the S4 image brochure.
The details of the planned construction measures can be found here.
You can downloadall the project's preliminary planning documents from the website of NAH, Schleswig-Holstein's local transport association.
Objectives and benefits
People in Hamburg and Schleswig-Holstein's Stormarn district will benefit equally from the new line.
runs more often
The new S-Bahn line will largely put an end to mixed operations by separating suburban rail services from regional and long-distance trains. This will help to eliminate delays, so the S4 will be able to run more often.
is more convenient
The new stations will make changing trains simpler and reduce the length of time that people spend travelling. Passengers will have a direct link to many destinations in Hamburg, and changing at the city's main station will become a thing of the past.
improves the rail network
Hamburg's main station will operate more smoothly: the S4 will use the platforms specifically for S-Bahn services, thereby creating space for long-distance trains. This will benefit all of northern Germany.
Getting to Hamburg Airport will be easier: at Hasselbrook, many passengers can simply cross to the other side of the platform to catch the S1.
To meet continuously rising demand for local transport, the S4 line will use modern S-Bahn trains that are completely barrier-free for easy access.
Drivers and pedestrians won't have to wait at level crossings anymore because most of these will either be removed completely or be replaced by bridges and tunnels. This will make for faster – and far safer – journeys.