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Integrated River Engineering Project on the Danube East of Vienna (IREP)
Start date: Dec 31, 2006,

This project is part of TEN-T Priority Project 18 and aims at providing a solution to riverbed erosion and at improving the ecological and nautical conditions on the freeflowing section of the Danube between Vienna and Bratislava. The project is the result of an integrative planning approach. On a length of about three kilometres, a pilot project at Bad Deutsch-Altenburg was started in February 2012 in order to test measures of the IREP in natura.On a section with a total length of about 48 km, from the Freudenau river power plant in Vienna to the Austrian-Slovakian border, the Danube is free-flowing. Due to reduced sediment transport downstream of the power plant in Vienna, a degradation of the riverbed has taken place since its completion in 1998, resulting in a decoupling of the river and its floodplains as well as in falling groundwater levels.Additional ecological deficits were caused by river engineering structures which were erected in past centuries and which endanger the habitats of typical local flora and fauna. Regarding navigable conditions, there are inadequate fairway depths and restricted fairway widths in this section, which negatively affect the competitiveness of inland waterway transport, both in Austria and on an international level, as the majority of transports on the Danube waterway on Austrian territory is of international and long-distance character.ObjectivesThe Integrated River Engineering Project on the Danube East of Vienna is an integrated overall project with the following objectives:· Riverbed stability· Improvement of ecological conditions· Improvement of nautical conditions in low-water periods Achievements: Interdisciplinary monitoring of the project is ongoing since 2005. Five pilot projects were finished between 1998 and 2009 which featured measures on five different sectors within the project area (side arm reconnection, river bank restoration and groyne optimization).From February 2012 to July 2014 the pilot project at Bad Deutsch-Altenburg was implemented on a sector with a length of approx. 3 km with the aim to gain experience and reducing technical and economical risks for the Integrated River Engineering Project by realizing in natura all measures foreseen in the integrated project in one sector for the first time.

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