• Switzerland edition
 
Rail operator seeks to axe Bern-Paris TGV
Lyria's TGV routes linking Paris and Switzerland's major cities (Image: Lyria)

Rail operator seeks to axe Bern-Paris TGV

Published: 13 Dec 2012 10:42 GMT+01:00

Alain Barbey, Lyria’s general manager, says the TGV route is running a deficit of 2.3 million a year and no signs of improvement appear in sight.

The line runs between Bern and Paris via Neuchâtel with stops in the French towns of Pontarlier, Frasne and Dijon, an itinerary that takes more than six and a half hours.

“There is only one train a day and the route is long and winding,” Barbey told Tamedia’s French-language newspapers, explaining that the service no longer meets the needs of passengers.

“And we see no possible evolution.”

One of the problems dogging the service is that since the introduction of new links between Bern and Basel, a third of passengers travelling from the Swiss capital to Paris have elected to go via Basel.

Lyria is jointly run by Swiss Federal Railways (SBB) and SNCF, the French rail carrier.

But both state-run railways are under pressure to cut costs.

Politicians from Neuchâtel and the French communities of Pontarlier and Frasne are alarmed at the prospect of losing the TGV service.

They met with Barbey and representatives of SBB and SNCF earlier this month  to insist on the need to maintain the link.

“Not everything is being done to promote the Bern-Neuchâtel-Paris line,” Marie-Guite Dufay, chair of the Franche-Comté region is quoted as telling the Tamedia newspapers.

Dufay is also worried that the TGV line linking Lausanne and Paris may also be at risk after SNCF announced possible changes starting in 2015.

She has sought guarantees that the line will continue to serve Frasne in France.

Barbey said Lyria was happy with the performance of the Lausanne-Paris “and there is no risk that it will disappear in the short- to medium-term.”

 He said the only concern lies with planned construction work at the Lausanne train station which will result in two fewer platforms being available starting in 2015.

Barbey added, however, that the rail operator could not guarantee long-term routes because “things can evolve rapidly in the rail sector”.

Malcolm Curtis (news@thelocal.ch)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines

Bern museum issues list of Nazi-looted artworks

The Bern Museum of Fine Arts published on Thursday the first list of the more than 1,500 artworks hoarded during the Nazi era that it inherited from a German recluse. READ  

WTO agrees to enact first global trade reform deal
WTO chief Roberto Azevedo: 'We are back on track!" Photo: WTO

WTO agrees to enact first global trade reform deal

Ending months of deadlock, the Geneva-based World Trade Organization agreed Thursday to implement the first global trade reform agreement in its 19-year-history. READ  

Italy suspends Novartis vaccine after three die
Photo: Sebastien Bozon/AFP

Italy suspends Novartis vaccine after three die

Italy suspended the use of a flu vaccine made by Swiss pharmaceuticals giant Novartis on Thursday amid fears it may have caused three deaths. READ  

Bern cathedral set to lose tower scaffolding
Bern's protestant cathedral, shown here with scaffolding, towers over the Old Town. Photo: Berner MĂĽnster-Stiftung

Bern cathedral set to lose tower scaffolding

For more than half a century scaffolding has cloaked Switzerland’s tallest cathedral, but in a few weeks most of it will be pulled down as restoration work on the exterior of Bern’s MĂĽnster nears an end. READ  

Man admits to strangling girlfriend to death
Town centre of Morges, west of Lausanne. Photo: Malcolm Curtis/The Local

Man admits to strangling girlfriend to death

A 31-year-old man in detention has admitted strangling to death his 25-year-old girlfriend following a dispute in the town of Morges at the end of October, Vaud cantonal police said on Thursday. READ  

Red Cross seeks record budget as aid needs soar
Red Cross chief Peter Maurer. Photo: Junior D. Kannah/AFP

Red Cross seeks record budget as aid needs soar

The Geneva-based Red Cross says it will need a record $1.68 billion (1.26 billion euros) to cover its humanitarian activities next year, amid soaring needs for aid in conflict-hit countries like Syria, Iraq and Ukraine. READ  

Meat firm apologizes over labelling scandal
Carna Grisha delivery trucks. Photo: Carna Grisha

Meat firm apologizes over labelling scandal

Faced with dropping sales in the wake of a scandal about falsely labelled products, Switzerland’s fifth largest meat company, Carna Grisha, has issued an apology and announced measures intended to reassure customers. READ  

Ronaldo goal gives Real Madrid edge over Basel
Ronaldo (left) vies with Basel's Swiss defender Philipp Degen in Wednesday night's match. Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP

Ronaldo goal gives Real Madrid edge over Basel

Cristiano Ronaldo scored his 71st Champions League goal as Real Madrid recorded a club record-equalling 15th consecutive win by beating FC Basel 1-0 in Switzerland in the Champions League on Wednesday. READ  

Bern museum gets grant to house Gurlitt artworks
Photo: Kunstmuseum Bern (Bern Museum of Fine Arts)

Bern museum gets grant to house Gurlitt artworks

An anonymous benefactor has put up at least one million francs ($1.04 million) to help the Museum of Fine Arts in Bern house a massive collection of 1,000 artworks hoarded during the Nazi era. READ  

Two men arrested over refugee centre fire
Photo: SIS/Ville de Genève/File

Two men arrested over refugee centre fire

Two people have been arrested on suspicion of intentionally setting a fire at a centre for asylum seekers in the canton of Geneva that left one man dead and 40 others injured earlier this month, according to a report. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
National
Activists petition federal government for ban on eating cats and dogs
National
Swiss meat firm faces scandal over alleged false labelling of products
Sport
Federer victory gives Switzerland its first Davis Cup tennis title
National
Switzerland's Christmas market season gets into full swing
Business & Money
Italy's PM upset over Swiss mogul's acquittal in asbestos deaths
Business & Money
University of Zurich study finds 'banker's oath' could spur honesty
Sponsored Article
Exclusive offer: Try out home exchange
National
Swiss National Bank chief calls proposal to boost gold reserves 'fatal'
National
Mudslides kill four people in Ticino and neighbouring Italy
Culture
British X Factor star seeks internet support for Swiss Eurovision place
National
Court overturns ban by backing right for schoolgirl to wear scarf
National
Swiss ranking for English skills worsens among non-Anglo countries
Culture
Swiss model and French TV star Nabilla held for 'attempted murder'
Travel
Switzerland's Zermatt voted best ski resort in the Alps by skiers
Sport
VIDEO: FC Zurich claims crime after 'vicious' tackle hospitalizes player
Tech
Federal government announces new '.swiss' internet domain name
National
Zany emergency: Basel firefighters rescue ass stuck in manhole
Business & Money
American jury clears former UBS top executive of tax fraud
International
Switzerland ranks second to Norway in global 'prosperity' index
National
Financial regulator bans former Coop Bank CEO for three years
International
Switzerland slips in World Economic Forum's gender equality rankings
National
Job candidates unhappy with hiring process in Switzerland
National
Glacier 3000 opens new foot bridge spanning two mountains in Vaud
National
Swiss seek special Unesco heritage listing for yodelling and watchmaking
International
Switzerland regarded as best place in world for expats: global survey
National
Red faces at Migros over Hitler and Mussolini coffee cream pots
National
Quarter of workers in Switzerland 'stressed out': new survey
Travel
Lonely Planet ranks Zermatt among top places to visit in 2015
National
Majority of Swiss back proposed new immigration curbs: poll
Features
Eritrean asylum seekers find refuge in Swiss monastery town
National
Expat American professor disputes 'unjust' Swiss citizenship rejection
National
Sputtering eurozone drags down Swiss economic growth forecast
Features
Swiss-based English expat writer lauds immigrant 'brains and brawn'
International
Our survey: Switzerland third priciest for food and drink from back home
National
Zurich market gardener sets world 'record' for heaviest pumpkin
National
Report: Switzerland's residents richer than before economic crash
Features
Geneva lab sleuths use high tech to help art world uncover fakes
National
Father of Scot missing since early September fears Swiss trauma
National
Foreign women give birth to rising share of newborns: latest figures
National
'Giant's penis' bloom in Basel uni botanical garden bigger than ever
National
Switzerland's voters reject public health insurance proposal
National
Zooming foreign immigration continues to boost Swiss population
National
Scientific study rings alarm over wellbeing of Swiss cows with bells
National
Geneva MP seeks ban on charging for tap water in restaurants
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

2,038
jobs available
The Local Spain is hiring!
The Local is seeking a new editor for our site in Spain to join our growing team of internationally-minded, driven, ambitious and clued-up journalists.
Details and how to apply