Transport in Belgium

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Transport in Belgium is facilitated with well-developed road, air, rail and water networks. The rail network has 2,950 km of electrified tracks.[1] The road network has 118,414 km of roads among which 1,747 km of motorways, 13,892 of main roads and 102,775 km of other paved roads.[2] Urban rail network is also developed in Brussels, Antwerp and Charleroi. The ports of Antwerp and Bruges-Zeebrugge are two of the biggest seaports in Europe. The Brussels National Airport is Belgium's biggest airport.

Contents

Railways

Rail transport in Belgium was historically managed by the National Railway Company of Belgium, known as SNCB in French and NMBS in Dutch. In 2005, the public company was split into 2 companies: Infrabel, which manages the rail network and SNCB/NMBS itself, which manages the freight and passenger services. Both companies are held by a third company, named SNCB/NMBS Holding. There is a total of 3,536 kilometres, (2,563 km double track (as of 1998)), of which 2,950 km are electrified, mainly at 3,000 volts DC but with 351 km at 25 kV 50 Hz AC (2004) and all on standard gauge of 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in). In 2004 the National Railway Company of Belgium, carried 178.4 million passengers a total of 8,676 million passenger-kilometres. Due to the high population density, operations are relatively profitable, so tickets are cheap and the frequency of services is high. The NMBS/SNCB is permanently updating its rolling stock.

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