Finance Minister Brunner demands that Küssler implement the plan.

In a letter, Finance Minister Magnus Brunner (ÖVP) demands that Environment Minister Leonore Gewessler (Greens) implement the Lobau Tunnel. Currently the exam is going on.

The controversy over the Lopao Tunnel comes to a head again at the end of the year. Finance Minister Magnus Bruner (ÖVP) is now said to have written to Environment Minister Leonor Küsler (Greens) after the state of Lower Austria filed a complaint with the Constitutional Court (VfGH) the previous week seeking legal rights. “The Courier” reported online on Wednesday that all plans, including the Lobautunnel, must be implemented.

Brunner's letter addressed to the Infrastructure Ministry under Gewessler and to Asfinag: “The Federal Ministry of Finance (BMF) has reached an agreement on Asfinag's spending plans. All legally standardized projects and for this “make the budget available in the medium-term planning,” the BMF said.

Presently “Strategic Study of Transport”

“A strategic transport review is currently underway on the Lopao highway, including the tunnel through the nature reserve,” a statement from BMK said. This test is a prerequisite for removing the motorway from the Federal Highway Code.

The climate test came to the unequivocal conclusion that lopavtophan could further exacerbate the climate crisis and destroy valuable soil, it said. “For this reason – and to prevent damage to the national park – the project will not proceed further. Of course it remains and the Ministry of Finance has confirmed this approach by approving the Asfinag construction plan for 2022.

According to the “Kurier” report, Brunner approved the then Asfinak road construction project without the Lobau tunnel in 2022, but returned to Kevesler. He, therefore, informed him that “the planned road projects, which are no longer seen in the Asfinac projects, are on hold and not stopped, and will therefore be resumed in two years.” Continued. The letter now states that this deadline has passed.

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However, Kevesler announced in September 2022 that he would begin a so-called “in-depth study” of the Lobau tunnel, which would result in the project being removed from the Road Construction Act. The decision was based on expert opinion that the road would be counterproductive to climate targets set by Vienna.

As he explained, such examination takes two years on average. Efforts will be made to move forward as quickly as possible – but he is confident the Lobau tunnel will be outlawed. The federal ÖVP strongly criticized the move at the time and declared that the debate on it was over. Criticism also came from Vienna (SPÖ, ÖVP and FPÖ) and Lower Austria (ÖVP). According to “Curier”, Asfinak now refers to “strategic censorship of traffic”. It has not yet been completed, so no construction costs for S1 are included in the construction plan for 2024. (APA)

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