2017 Integrated Report – Departure into a new era


A high-performing infrastructure requires continuous and adequate capital expenditures for its maintenance and expansion. Large capital expenditures lead to more construction activities in the network.

Improved quality in existing network

About € 28 billion will have been invested between 2015 and 2019 in modernizing the rail network, stations and power systems – more than ever before. This is provided for in the performance and financing agreement (Leistungs- und Finanzierungsvereinbarung; LuFV) II between the Federal Government and DB Group. Our largest infrastructure modernization initiative involved the renovation not only of bridges and tunnels but also of tracks, switches and interlockings. In 2017, about € 5.2 billion was invested in renovating and maintaining, among other things, about 1,650 km of track and about 1,800 switches as well as about 4,600 installations for command and control technology. This resulted in a large number of construction activities.

  • More comfort and better service at stations
  • Renovation of our bridges

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Expansion of the infrastructure

For higher quality and capacity
The record sum of over € 7.5 billion was invested by us in 2017 in the German rail network. This puts us on the right track to make rail the number one choice for mobility in Germany. We have invested nearly a third of this, about € 2.1 billion, in numerous new construction and development initiatives. Twelve construc - tion initiatives in major projects were launched all over Germany. There were also 15 projects commissioned in 2017. These include the German unification transport projects (Verkehrsprojekte Deutsche Einheit; VDE) no. 8 with the commissioning of the last section Nuremberg–Erfurt–Halle/Leipzig, which has cut the travel time between Berlin and Munich by two hours since December 2017.

  • Management center Construction set up

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Federal Transport Infrastructure Plan 2030 and Innovation Forum on speeding up planning

The German Federal Cabinet approved the Federal Transport Infrastructure Plan (Bundesverkehrswegeplan; BVWP) 2030 on August 3, 2016. The relevant additional legislation was successfully passed on December 16, 2016. Key measures filed by DB Group for the new BVWP were adopted.

BVWP 2030 contains important projects for the further development of the rail network. Top priority, for example, is given to the expansion of the five major hubs (Frankfurt am Main, Hamburg, Cologne, Mannheim and Munich) and to the East corridor, which is important for freight transport. In September 2017 the BMVI completed its evaluation of a continuous network for trains 740 meters long, which would make a material contribution to improving the performance of the rail network and to reducing production costs in rail freight transport. The final report of the Innovation Forum on speeding up planning, initiated by the BMVI, was presented as early as May 2017. The report makes recommendations for implementing the speeding up of planning by means of a radical reform of planning law. This could allow the new rail projects in BVWP 2030 to be implemented faster.

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Significant rise in capital expenditures

Capital expenditures (€ million)






Gross capital expenditures 



+ 954

+ 10.0

Investment grants



+ 534

+ 8.6

Net capital expenditures 



+ 420

+ 12.7

The increase in gross capital expenditures was mainly due to markedly higher expenditure on track infrastructure and vehicles. Investment grants also increased significantly, accounting for about 64% of gross capital expenditures (previous year: about 65%).

Most of the rise in net capital expenditures was driven by DB Long-Distance, with new ICE trains and the facility infrastructure accounting for the bulk of it.

CHART 2198

Our capital expenditure activities focused especially on measures to improve performance and efficiency in the area of track infrastructure and the rejuvenation of our fleet. The structure of our gross capital expenditures shifted in favor of passenger transport, mainly because of higher capital expenditures on the ICE fleet.

  • Capital expenditure priorities unchanged in Germany
  • Investment grants primarily for infrastructure

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Requirement plan implementation agreement signed

The requirement plan implementation agreement (Bedarfsplanumsetzungsvereinbarung; BUV) was signed with the BMVI on July 25, 2017 to speed up the implementation of major projects and takes effect from January 1, 2018. Under the agreed model for the implementation of new track infrastructure construction and expansion projects by the Federal Government, in the future, new plans and results of early public participation will be presented once a year to the Bundestag. Instead of the current plan lump sum, in the future the Federal Government will subsidize total project costs, with DB Group covering the economically viable share of the project portfolio. Planning support from the Federal Railway Authority will increase and non-compliance with commissioning dates will be penalized.

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Progress on the Stuttgart – Ulm project 

The cost and schedule development of the Stuttgart – Ulm rail project will be discussed in Events after the balance sheet date. Further progress has been made on construction work:

  • Further reinforcement and concreting work on the floors and walls in some construction phases is underway.
  • The concreting of the first three chalices is now complete.
  • The west tube of the Filder tunnel was bored conventionally and the tunnel boring machine passed through this section.
  • Breakthrough to the second tube of the Cannstatt tunnel was completed at the northern approaches to the station (Nordkopf) at the start of October.
  • In total, about 90% of the relevant anhydrite seams in the Cannstatt and Feuerbach tunnels have been broken through successfully.
  • More than 35 km, representing about 60% of the tunnels required for Stuttgart 21, have been drilled and excavated.
  • Following submission of an appeal to the Higher Administrative Court, no further contracts will be awarded in the airport sector for plan approval section 1.3a despite possible immediate enforceability until a final judgment has been issued.
  • On the Wendlingen – Ulm new construction line, a stretch of over 38 km, or more than 60% of the tunnel kilometers, has already been bored and extracted. 
  • The tunnel boring machines accommodated signage for the last major tunnel in the foothills (Albvorland tunnel, over 8 km long) in October 2017.

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Implementation of capital expenditure program for the future

The BMVI is providing additional Federal funding of € 995 million from 2016 to 2018 as part of the Federal Government’s capital expenditure program for the future. Under financing agreements with the BMVI, funding of € 745 million (€ 645 million for DB Netze Track and € 100 million for DB Netze Stations) has been committed from the Federal budget. The focus of the funding will be on creating a planning reserve, noise protection rail, increasing digital capacity, Building Information Modeling (BIM), digitalization and the upgrade of new control systems and accessibility at stations. In total, about € 295 million was spent in the first two years.

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