The development and implementation of River Information Services (RIS) is a success story which started in Austria in 1999. Since then RIS standards have been established in many European countries to a great extent thanks to the crucial support of viadonau. These important digital information tools are constantly being improved and enhanced in order to constantly guarantee accurate and reliable data on the current state of the waterway inside and outside national borders. Given the fact that a well-functioning international cooperation is crucial for the success of RIS, the TEN-T Project CoRISMa has been dedicated intensively for the past two years to the enhancement and development of RIS. This project has further ensured the continuation of the European success story of RIS and crossed the finish line on 11 December in Antwerp (Belgium).

The best way to ensure safer and more efficient inland waterway transport throughout Europe is one that goes through harmonization, precise and regularly updated fairway information. Building on already well-founded RIS-related infrastructure, the implementation of a harmonized information system in Europe can perform significantly better. Therefore, the focus of the TEN-T project CoRISma - RIS enable Corridor Management - was on the enhanced international harmonization of the information services as well as the provision of more specifically adjusted and tailor-made information services adapted to the various needs of the numerous users of inland waterways.

CoRISMa the future of modern European corridor management

The CoRISMa participating countries, Austria, Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands and Luxembourg see it as their mission to improve the use and interconnection of RIS systems with a strong focus on stakeholder needs (ports, logistics and transport companies, shippers and skippers). This project was coordinated by the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment - Rijkswaterstaat -, funded by the European Commission under the Department for Transport and Mobility (DG MOVE) of the European Union. viadonau took over the coordination of the Austrian contribution to the project and the communication and dissemination of the project and made tremendous contributions especially in the fields of lock management, logistics services and consolidating a vast range of information on fairway and traffic information.

CoRISMa has applied an integrative approach for its pilot concepts, one that was developed for the various transport planning and logistics challenges of a modern corridor management. These were carefully drafted in accordance with the needs of the stakeholders for all affected areas, starting from lock management until traffic planning and facilitated access to vessel positioning data and a new revolutionary cross-border data model of the traffic network.

The advantages of a harmonized and internationally accessible information system for infrastructure, traffic and logistics on the European waterways is obvious for the project partners. Through the usability of the information services by private and public interest groups (Logistics partners, skippers, fleet operators, shipping companies and authorities). This is a vital step towards a harmonized corridor management for the waterways of Europe.

Marc Vanderhaegen, DG MOVE Policy Officer for Port and Inland Navigation, expressed his enthusiasm about the constructive cooperation of the project partners and underlined again: "viadonau has been for many years a visionary driving force behind the integration of eastern European countries in a continental RIS network. We have succeeded in creating long-term Incentives for commonly used waterways and hence sustainably reinforced and enhanced the role of inland navigation as a highly efficient transport mode. This could only be achieved thanks to the successful international cooperation of all partners in all aspects of the project, ranging from communication to technical expertise."

Harmonized technolgies as foundation for the future

viadonau and its fellow CoRISMa project partners want to be part of the future of RIS in Europe, actively and sustainably. After the successful completion of the project on 11 December at the Cruise Terminal in Antwerp and two very intensive years, the international experts are already focusing on the next important development phases. The new challenge will be the technical harmonization of the information systems but also possibilities of combining maritime and inland navigation technologies along with modernizing the European waterway network.

CoRISMa Project partners:
Netherlands: Rijkswaterstaat, Ministerium für Wasser, Transport und Umwelt (RWS) Germany: Bundesministerium für Verkehr und digitale Infrastruktur (BMVI), Generaldirektion Wasserstraßen und Schifffahrt - Außenstelle Süd (GDWS, ASt Süd) Austria: via donau - Österreichische Wasserstraßen-Gesellschaft mbH (viadonau), Bundesministerium für Verkehr, Innovation und Technologie (bmvit)
Belgium: nv De Scheepvaart, Departement van Mobiliteit en Openbare Werken Luxembourg: Ministère du Développement durable et des Infrastructures

Find out more on the CoRISMa project in this animation film: