The Ukrainian Railways pubic joint-stock company (Ukrzaliznytsia) may launch a train to another Polish city in the near future, following the launch of a train to Przemysl. The next train may be launched to Chelm, where there is a 1520-mm rail track. Other destinations in Europe are also being considered, particularly in the Baltic States, in the medium term," Ihor Romankiv, the director of passenger transportation and services at Ukrzaliznytsia, said in an interview to the Delo.UA publication.
Chelm is a town located 25 kilometers from the Polish border with Ukraine. A major train station (the Kovel train station in the Volyn region) is located 60 kilometers from the border. Compared with Przemysl, Chelm has better rail links with the capital of Poland, Warsaw.
According to Romankiv, the main obstacle on expansion of the network of railway routes to Eastern Europe is infrastructure. This is because not many stations in Poland and neighboring countries are compatible with the broad gauge that is common in the former Soviet republics.
Romankiv also said that the rail link with Przemysl could be expanded by using commuter trains. "Nobody has rejected the idea of a commuter train, but that is an entirely different passenger segment and an entirely different transportation task. The Intercity+ train is largely oriented toward ordinary tourists and students traveling to study or for cultural exchange while a commuter train will exclusively meet the current needs of the local region," Romankiv said.
According to him, Ukrzaliznytsia has managed to optimize the process of purchase of tickets for the Przemysl-Lviv-Kyiv high-speed train at ticket offices in Poland. “The problem involving tickets from Poland was situational. It occurred only once. As of today, I have been assured by my Polish colleagues and representatives of Ukrzaliznytsia that the problem has been solved,” said Romankiv.