In June 2024 PORR has successfully completed the modernization of one of the most important railway sections connecting the capital Bucharest to the Bulgarian border, passing also through a major Danube harbour city-Giurgiu.

The North Bucharest – Jilava – North Giurgiu – North Giurgiu – North Giurgiu Border railway line is part of the TEN-T central network and has been identified as a conventional railway line in need of modernization. The Bucharest North – Giurgiu North railway line is the first railway line established in Romania and is located on the Pan-European Corridor IX route (Helsinki – Vyborg – St. Petersburg – Pskov – Gomei – Kiev – Ljubashevka – Chisinau – Bucharest – Dimitrovgrad – Alexandropoulis), part of the AGC, AGTC and T.E.R. networks.

Within this project, PORR Slab Track Austria technology has been successfully implemented on the new built bridge over the Arges river, on 1,393 m of track. Also noted as a premiere is implementation of rail expansion device on dedicated, precast reinforced concrete slabs.

One of the most dynamic contexts of our days is the compliance with the set of common technical and safety rules that lead to overcoming system differences, and promote interoperability in the European rail network.

“©PORR” top view of slab track installation in progress.jpg



For the national railway network of Romania it was the first project implementing a certified ballastless track system, so fulfillment of structural compatibility within the project together with compliance with interoperability criteria were challenges to overcome.

From the technical point of view, the structural compatibility of the infrastructure subsystem was proved in design stage by a track-structure interaction report; at the connection between ballastless track and conventional track the vertical deflections and settlements of the ballasted track were limited to minimum by using different fastening system stiffness, a load distribution slab (LDS) and different compaction degree of the soil material underneath LDS; the expansion of the structure was covered by using a rail expansion device mounted on PORR special precast reinforced concrete slabs.

In order to prove compliance with the interoperability criteria, an EC certificate of verification has been achieved during the design phase, thus proving compliance with the relevant TSI requirements-INF(EU) 1299/2014 as amended by (EU) 2019/776.

The implementation of the first ballastless system on the project in Romania has been successfully accomplished showing some particular relevant advantages:

  • superior performance and track longevity in operations
  • reduced execution time
  • accurate installation with less labour
  • weather-independent system
  • lower track geometry
  • lower maintenance requirements.

Since the 1980s when PORR initially took up the challenge of new technologies for ballastless track systems, we have continued investigating, researching, developing, testing and implementing engineering solutions. After more than 35 years of proven records of slab track in operation, we continue this challenging work with new projects and new contexts.

For more information please see:


PORR Slab Track Austria product video


By Alice Sofian

About the Author:

Alice Sofian is a civil engineer with over 20 years of experience working on international infrastructure projects, with a focus on quality management, project management and business development for high speed, metro and rehabilitation slab track projects.