Electrification of the Algarve Line advances «in the coming weeks»

All that's left is "the last authorizations", guaranteed the vice-president of Infraestruturas de Portugal

The electrification work of the Algarve Line will start «in the coming weeks», announced today, in Faro, Carlos Fernandes, vice-president of Infraestruturas de Portugal (IP).

According to the vice president of IP, the projects for the modernization of the Algarve Line, between Tunes and Lagos and between Faro and Vila Real de Santo António, which include the electrification of these sections, «are completed».

«The Environmental Impact Assessment process between Faro and VRSA is finished and the one in Tunis and Lagos is practically closed”, added the same responsible.

“IP plans to launch these two projects in the coming weeks. We are just waiting for the last authorizations and, from there, we launch the works», he assured.

Carlos Fernandes spoke with journalists on the sidelines of the solemn session of the Day of the City of Faro, where he represented IP in the signature of a protocol for the construction of an overpass next to Teatro das Figuras, which allows deactivating the existing level crossing.

The IP board member made a point of drawing attention to the various projects that are underway and that will benefit the Algarve: from the outset those foreseen in the Railroad 2020 plan that «will happen until 2023».

The project that will be launched shortly will “allow the two missing sections to be modernized with electrification, with the automation of all level crossings and the suppression of two more level crossings”.

“This will be an important step towards the requalification of this infrastructure, allowing CP to use newer, more modern, more comfortable and faster trains”, explained Carlos Fernandes.

“We expect time savings between Lagos and VRSA of around half an hour with this new rolling stock,” he said.

This project, which «will be an important boost in the requalification of the Algarve's railway system», will require an investment «of around 65 million euros, with a 75% contribution from the European Union».


Carlos Fernandes, Vice President of IP – File Photo


In addition to this undertaking on the Algarve Line, there are projects in the pipeline that can bring «a significant improvement in the rail connection between Faro and Lisbon».

The Government has put into public discussion, within the scope of the National Infrastructure Plan, a project of «more than 100 million euros of investment to reduce the connection time between Lisbon and Faro».

«This is a project that will allow a set of variants to the current line, in the mountain range, with a significant reduction in the connection time between the Algarve and Lisbon», explained Carlos Fernandes.

The same infrastructure plan for the next decade also contemplates the possibility of recovering the new railway crossing in Lisbon, "a project that was already planned, but which has since fallen".

Only in this case would it be possible to "save half an hour in travel time".

The two projects, together, «allow you to take about an hour in the connection between Faro and Lisbon, if both are approved».

«We are talking about a goal of making this trip in two hours, something that, together with the investment we are making in the Algarve Line, will allow us to have a railway system with another level of competitiveness, compared to what we have now», he concluded Carlos Fernandes.

The horizon for the execution of these contracts, if they are approved, is «the next decade», the same as the possible connection to the Airport of Faro, which is also being evaluated under the same National Infrastructure Plan.



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