Shortly after its incorporation in February 2006, Roissy Carex initiated a technical and economic feasibility study in order to evaluate the relevancy of a service meeting the needs of future customers involved in the project. This large-scale study which was entrusted to the Elcimaï consultancy group and Sigma Conseils allowed it to define the Carex concept at a European level and covered :
Consolidation of the volumes communicated by Roissy CDG freight operators and segmented into express freight and cargo allowed us to forecast a traffic volume of 700,000 tons per year, i.e. the equivalent of 270,000 standard 2.6 ton pallets/containers (at the date of the study).
These volumes refer to modal transfer from air and road transport ("trucked flights").
This traffic expressed by Origin/Destination has allowed us to determine the sites to be served from Roissy CDG and the network phasing. The destinations of Amsterdam, Lyons, London, Liege and Cologne have been considered as priorities according to the needs expressed by Roissy freight operators involved in Roissy Carex and therefore selected for the network's first phase. The following two phases were determined by extending the service to Bordeaux, Marseilles, Strasbourg and Frankfurt and then to Italy and Spain.
The feasibility study also concerned the pooled organisation and the Carex service's operation rules.
The installation areas
Two sites intended to accommodate the Roissy Carex air-rail terminals have been chosen within the immediate vicinity of the airport platform: one on the commune of Goussainville rapidly connectable to the North Europe high-speed line; the other one on the commune of Tremblay-en-France offers easy connection to the so-called interconnection line for destinations in the South. It was decided later to privilege the area situated on the commune of Goussainville to the North-West of the airport in order to provide a rail service to both the North and the South, with more available land.
The railway infrastructures
Terminal dimensioning and operation as well as any necessary rail connections have been drafted. The rolling stock is dealt with in the first draft. Finally, a framework schedule has been drawn up in accordance with the needs expressed by future users of the Carex service.
Estimation of costs
An initial estimation of the investment, operation and maintenance costs associated with considering the freight volume has provided us with transport rates that are judged competitive by the partners involved. This analysis has been developed by drawing up the Roissy Carex business plan implemented from the end of 2007 (see the relevant section)