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Head station
Large bridge
Unknown route-map component "KRZu"
Line 28/3
Unknown route-map component "KRZu"
Line 96A (track A)
Unknown route-map component "KRZo"
Line 96 (track A)
Unknown route-map component "KRZu"
Line 26
Enter and exit short tunnel
Unknown route-map component "KRZo"
Ligne 96 (Brussels-Mons-France)
Straight track
Unknown route-map component "KRZurg"
Line 78 (Mons - St-Ghislain - Tournai)
Bridge over water
Restricted border on track
French border (LGV Nord)
Unknown route-map component "ABZqlr"
to Paris, Lille and Channel Tunnel to CTRL and London

The HSL 1 is a Belgian high speed rail line which connects Brussels with LGV Nord at the border with France. It is 88 km (55 mi) long with 71 km of dedicated high-speed tracks and 17 km of modernised lines. Service began on 14 December 1997.

The line has appreciably shortened journey times, the journey from Paris to Brussels now taking 1:22. In combination with the LGV Nord, it has also impacted international journeys to other cities in France and to London, ensuring high-speed through-running by Eurostar, TGV, Thalys PBA and Thalys PBKA trainsets.

The total construction cost was €1.42 billion. The signalling system installed is the French TVM-430 in-cab signalling system, the same as LGV Nord in France, and High Speed 1 in the UK.



Trains leave Brussels-South station via a new viaduct completed in 2006 to separate high-speed services from local services.[1] From there they parallel the traditional lines. At Forest/Vorst the train passes the depot where inspections of Thalys and Eurostar trains may be carried out. At Halle (km 13) the HST enters its own cut-and-cover section before crossing the Brussels-Charleroi Canal; at km 17 the high speed line proper begins at the Lembeek Viaduct, supporting 300 km/h speeds.

Between Rebecq and Enghien the line parallels the A8 autoroute, separated by a security fence. At Enghien the line parallels the regular Brussels-Tournai line for approximately 10 km.

The maintenance depot "Le Coucou" is located near Ath. This station served as the operations base during the construction of the line (from 1993 to 1998) and currently serves as the maintenance depot for HSL 1. Slightly further on is the 2005 m long Arbre Viaduct (one of the longest rail viaducts in Europe) between Ath and Chièvres; it passes over the Ath-Blaton canal, the Dender River, the Mons road and the Ath-Jurbise railway.

At Antoing there is a connector to the Mons-Tournai line, used by the Thalys between Paris and Namur. After passing over the 483m Scheldt River Viaduct, and through the 365m Bruyelle cut-and-cover section, the line crosses the Belgian-French border at Wannehain, km 88. 11 km further on, the Frétin triangle splits the LGV Nord towards Paris or Lille.

See also


External links



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