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DRIVING

F1 and summer holidays: Which Austrian roads will be busy this weekend?

Record-breaking crowds are expected in Spielberg this weekend for the F1 Grand Prix race. Meanwhile, summer holidays start in Austria and Germany. It's going to be a busy one on Austrian roads.

F1 and summer holidays: Which Austrian roads will be busy this weekend?
This weekend is to be a busy one on Austrian roads with the F1 race in Spielberg and the start of the school summer holidays. Photo by Dimitry Anikin on Unsplash

Motorists should prepare for long delays on some Austrian roads this weekend as Austria hosts the F1 Grand Prix and school summer holidays start in several Austrian and German states.

The Kurier is reporting that around 300,000 people are expected at the Spielberg Red Bull Ring in Styria for the F1 race, with 100,000 attending on Sunday alone.

As a result, all hotels and camp sites in the region are completely booked out, which means lots of visitors will be making their way to the region in the coming days.

FOR MEMBERS: 7 things to know about driving in Austria this summer

Motoring organisations ARBÖ and ÖAMTC are already warning motorists of the high possibility of traffic jams, especially when exiting the Pyhrnautobahn (A9) at the St. Michael junction.

Other expected hotspots are the Murtal expressway (S36) and Obdacher Strasse (B78).

A spokesperson for ARBÖ said: “If possible, use public transport.”

Alternative transport options include bus shuttles to the event site and a Park and Bike service at Therme Fohnsdorf where visitors can park their cars and then cycle to the Red Bull Ring.

A shuttle bus will also be in operation from Knittelfeld train station. The service will run from Friday to Sunday, every 20 minutes between 8am and 8pm, and every 30 minutes from 8pm to 11pm (or 7pm on Sunday). Rail operator ÖBB recommends booking tickets in advance.

READ MORE: When and where to avoid driving in Austria this summer

In Spielberg itself, motorists should prepare for delays on Triester Straße, as well as on the direct access roads to the official parking areas at the track.

According to the ÖAMTC: “Day visitors should leave as early as possible. If you arrive in Spielberg around 7.30am you have a good chance of a quiet journey.” 

Thankfully, pleasant weather with highs of 23 degrees are forecast for this weekend, which will relieve some pressure on the roads.

Summer holidays

As well as the big attraction of the F1 race, the school summer holidays are beginning in Vienna, Lower Austria and Burgenland this week.

In Germany, the holidays start for Berlin and Brandenburg, and schools also break up in the Netherlands. 

This will bring extra traffic to roads in Austria as families set off on summer vacations – either in Austria or simply passing through the country to get to places like Italy and Croatia.

Find out more about avoiding the worst traffic on Austrian roads with The Local’s guide to the ÖAMTC’s traffic calendar.

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VIENNA

Summer traffic chaos: Construction work to be aware of in Vienna

The mid-year vacation months are when Austria tends to get most of its road and traffic work done. Here is the calendar for Vienna.

Summer traffic chaos: Construction work to be aware of in Vienna

The summer vacation months are a time when many people in Austria tend to go to their idyllic destinations. However, for those left in the country, especially the capital Vienna, it’s an opportunity to enjoy a lot of what the city has to offer.

Still, people may notice that the city has become quite a Baustelle, or a construction site, with loads of work being done on its public transport lines, streets and avenues.

READ ALSO: 7 things to know about driving in Austria this summer

For you to enjoy your summer in the city without facing too much traffic or disturbance, here is a list of the major construction sites in Vienna:

First and second districts

In Vienna’s first district, several sites are currently under construction or maintenance. The main areas are due to subway construction and should last for a long time, especially the work in Volksgartenstraße for the U2 and U5 lines, which is expected to last until 2028 and affects metro lines as well as partially blocking the lanes for car traffic.

In Franz-Josefs-Kai from Salztorgasse and Salztorbrücke until Rotenturmstraße and Marienbrücke, the renovation work of the subway will affect vehicle traffic until October 2nd – only two lanes will remain open for traffic.

READ MORE: What is Austria’s ‘traffic calendar’ and how can it help me save time?

The bridge repair work in Franzensbrücke required that the bridge be closed to vehicle traffic in both directions since June 6th.

Work in and around the Gürtel

Some of Vienna’s busiest roads will have intense work over the summer months. For example, until September 11th, the right lane on the Landstraßer Gürtel in the direction of travel to the A23 will be closed at night (from 8 pm to 5 am).

Extensive work in the Äußerer Gürtel will be carried out in sections until September 2nd, with only two lanes open for traffic.

Other construction sites

There are a few constructions works over summer in Simmering. Most notably, in Svetelskystraße, which led to the closure of a lane in Etrichstraße in the direction of travel to Simmeringer Hauptstraße.

In the 14th district, a road construction from Deutschordenstraße will close the street section between Hadikgasse and Keißlergasse until August for private transport. The work extends to the 13th district, and a part of the Auhofstraße (between Seuttergasse and ON 185) will be affected during the summer months.

READ ALSO: One day in Vienna: How to spend 24 hours in the Austrian capital

In the 20th district, Forsthausgasse 2-8, two lanes will be merged and the right-turn lane will be closed for work until August 12th, but pedestrian and bicycle traffic won’t be affected.

In the 21st district, Prager Straße 35-39, construction work will be carried out by day and two lanes will be left open in the direction of heading downtown.

The Kagraner Brücke, in the 22nd district, will also go through maintenance work until August 18th. During this time, traffic will be partially diverted to head into the city.

These are some of the main construction works in Vienna during the summer months. To see a complete list, including construction sites that began months (or years) ago and should last for longer, you can check out the official website here.

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