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Madrid-Barcelona-Perpignan high-speed rail line
{{{map_caption}}}
Line length: 621 km (386 mi)
Gauge: 1,435 mm (4 ft 8+12 in) (Standard)
Principal Stations and structures
Legend
Unknown route-map component "KBHFxa"
0.0 km Madrid
Junction both to and from right
to Seville
Station on track
64.4 km Guadalajara-Yebes
Station on track
221.1 km Calatayud
Junction to left
272.9 km Plasencia de Jalón
Junction to left Track turning from right
294.9 km Bif. Moncasí
Straight track Station on track
306.7 km Zaragoza-Delicias
Junction from left Junction to right
Straight track Station on track
Tardienta
Straight track End station
Huesca
Junction to left Track turning from right
434.6 km Les Torres de Sanuí
Straight track Station on track
442.1 km Lleida Pirineus
Junction from left Track turning right
448.6 km Artesa
Unknown route-map component "eABZgr+r"
512.8 km Corredor Mediterráneo
Station on track
520.9 km Camp de Tarragona
Junction to left
Barcelona avoiding line
Enter tunnel
Unknown route-map component "tKRZ"
Barcelona–Vilanova
Unknown route-map component "tHST"
El Prat
Exit tunnel
Junction from right
Direction Can Tunis
Enter tunnel
Unknown route-map component "tBHF"
620.9 km Barcelona Sants L3.gif L5.gif Cercanias sevilla.png
Unknown route-map component "extSTR"
Provença-Mallorca tunnel
Unknown route-map component "extBHF" + Interchange
Estació de la Sagrera L4gris.svg L9gris.svg Cercanias sevilla.png
Unknown route-map component "exTUNNELe"
Unknown route-map component "exABZrg"
Barcelona avoiding line
Unknown route-map component "exTUNNELa"
Unknown route-map component "extBHF"
Girona
Unknown route-map component "exTUNNELe"
Unknown route-map component "exBHF"
Figueres
Unknown route-map component "exKMW"
44.38 km International Section Ends
Unknown route-map component "exTUNNELa"
Pirineus Tunnel
Unknown route-map component "extGRENZE"
French - Spanish Border
Unknown route-map component "exTUNNELe"
Perthus Tunnel (8,300 m)
Transverse water Unknown route-map component "exWBRÜCKE" Transverse water
Tec River
Transverse track Unknown route-map component "xKRZo" Transverse track
Elna to Arles line
Unknown route-map component "exÜST"
crossover
Unknown route-map component "exAKRZo"
A9 Motorway
Unknown route-map component "exBRÜCKE1"
D612A road
Transverse water Unknown route-map component "exWBRÜCKE" Transverse water
Rand River
Unknown route-map component "exKMW"
0.00 km International Section starts
Unknown route-map component "xABZrg" Transverse track
Classic line to Vilafranca de Conflent
Straight track
Le Soler
Transverse track Junction from right
Classic line to Portbou
Station on track
Perpignan
Abbreviated in this map
Classic line powered at 1.5kV
Station on track
Nimes
Abbreviated in this map
LGV Méditerranée to Paris

The Madrid-Barcelona high-speed rail line is a 621-kilometre (386 mi) standard gauge railway line inaugurated on 20 February 2008. Designed for speeds of 300 km/h (186 mph) and compatibility with neighbouring countries' rail systems, it connects the cities of Madrid and Barcelona, in Spain. Work is underway to extend the line into France to connect with the European high speed network in 2012.

Contents

First stages

In 2003 construction of the first phase of a new standard gauge line from Madrid to the French border (Madrid–Zaragoza–Lleida) was completed and on 11 October of that year commercial service began. This service also stopped at Guadalajara–Yebes and Calatayud. The service began running at only 200 km/h (124 mph). On 19 May 2006, after two years of operation, speed was increased to 250 km/h (155 mph) when the Spanish ASFA signalling system was replaced with level 1 of the new European ETCS/ERTMS system. On 16 October 2006 the trains on this line increased their operating speed to 280 km/h (174 mph).

On the 18 December 2006 the AVE started operating to Camp de Tarragona, and on 7 May 2007 the service increased its speed to the maximum allowable for the line, 300 km/h (186 mph). This puts Tarragona at 30 minutes from Lleida. The extension to Barcelona was delayed various times due to technical problems; the Ministerio de Formento having originally forecast the AVE's arrival in Barcelona by the end of 2007.[1]

Complete operation

The complete line was opened February 2008. As of 2008, seventeen trains now run every day between the hours of 6 am and 9 pm, covering the distance between the two cities in just 2 hours 38 minutes, except for those stopping at all stations, which take 3 hours. Before the high-speed line was built, the journey between the two cities took more than six hours; and when the high speed line went only as far as Tarragona, 3 hours 45 minutes, operated with the Alvia service (120 series train), which continued on the conventional line to Barcelona, after a change of rail gauge.

Speed

It was originally forecast that, after reaching Barcelona in 2004, the line would run at 350 km/h (217 mph), the maximum capable speed of the new Siemens AVE trains which have replaced the Talgo Bombardier AVE S102, after the installation of level 2 of the ETCS/ERTMS, which is scheduled to be installed in 2008. But on the AVE's first day of operating at 300 km/h (186 mph) to Tarragona the Minister of Public Works, Magdalena Álvarez, stated that the maximum commercial operating speeds of the AVE on all lines would be 300 km/h (186 mph).[2]

Usage

It was forecasted that the AVE will substantially replace air traffic on the Barcelona - Madrid route, as it did (in the same way that the Eurostar has on the London-Paris/London-Brussels routes and France's TGV has on the Paris-Lyon route). In fact, more than 80% of travellers between Madrid and Seville use the AVE, with fewer than 20% travelling by air.[3]. The route Madrid-Barcelona was in 2007 the world's busiest passenger air route with 971 scheduled flights per week (both directions). In order to compete with each other RENFE has made, and Iberia will make, changes to their fare structures, as well as changing services; Iberia plans to use smaller planes which will leave as soon as full, and a non-stop AVE service is available between the two cities.

Criticism

There was much criticism during the construction of the Madrid-Barcelona line. A highly critical report by the consulting firm KPMG, commissioned by ADIF (Administrador de Infraestructuras Ferroviarias) at the behest of the Ministry for Public Works (Ministerio de Fomento) on June 23 2004, pointed to a lack of in-depth studies and over-hasty execution of works as the most important reasons for the problems that dogged construction of the AVE line. For example, during the construction of the AVE tunnel near Barcelona, a number of nearby buildings suffered minor damage from a large sinkhole that appeared near a commuter rail station, damaging one of its platforms. The construction committee of Barcelona's famed Sagrada Familia church lobbied for a re-routing of the tunnel - it passes within metres of the massive church's foundations. It also passes equally near the UNESCO-recognized Casa Milà also designed by Antoni Gaudi.

Furthermore, until 2005 both Siemens and Talgo/Bombardier train sets failed to meet scheduled speed targets, although in a test run during the homologation tests of the new S102 trains of RENFE, a train-set Talgo 350 (AVE S-102) reached a speed of 365 km/h (227 mph) on the night of the 25th to the 26th of June, and on July 2006 a Siemens Velaro train-set (AVE S-103) reached the highest top speed ever in Spain: 403.7 km/h (250.8 mph). This is a Spanish record for railed vehicles and a world record for unmodified commercial service trainsets, as the earlier TGV and ICE records were achieved with specially modified and shortened trainsets, and the Shinkansen (443 km/h/275 mph, 1996) record was for a test (non-commercial) trainset.

Planned services in 2012

Extension to France

Route of planned high speed rail link.

Work has begun to extend beyond Barcelona and across the France border to Perpignan, connecting with the high speed train service on the LGV Méditerranée to Paris and beyond. Originally planned to open in 2009, high speed trains are expected to start running in 2012. There have been delays in building a four kilometre tunnel in Girona, and controversy over the route between Sants and Sagrera stations in Barcelona. [4]

Perpignan to Figueres

This international high speed line is scheduled to open in February 2009. The 44.4 km long line will cross the French-Spanish border between Perpignan and Figueres through an 8.3 km tunnel bored under the Col du Perthus. The line will be open to high speed trains and freight. Through services to Barcelona using the classic line from Figueres to Barcelona are planned from summer 2010. The one and half hour journey is two hours quicker than currently via Portbou and Cerbère.[5]

International services

When the line is completed trains will be able to travel between the two countries without stopping, although this will require dual-current trainsets. The LGV Méditerranée reaches as far as Nimes, requiring trains to use the classic line from Nimes to Perpignan, which is electrified to 1.5 kV DC, not 25 kV 50 Hz used on high-speed rail lines. Perpignan is currently serviced daily by four dual-current TGV Duplex services to Paris and two services to Lille and beyond.

Effects on travel

The beginning of service on this line should greatly improve passenger journey times. Travel times between Paris and Barcelona are projected at 5 hours 35 minutes, and Madrid to Perpignan at 3 hours 50 minutes. Rail journeys of less than 4 hours are generally considered to be competitive with airlines. From Barcelona, several destinations in southern France are likely to be within this range, such as Marseilles, Lyon and Toulouse.

See also

References

  1. ^ La Vanguardia, 18 December 2006
  2. ^ La Vanguardia, 7 May 2007
  3. ^ Juan Carlos Martín and Gustavo Nombela, "Microeconomic impacts of investments in high speed trains in Spain", Annals of Regional Science, vol. 41, no. 3, September, 2007
  4. ^ "Perpignan-Barcelona AVE to open in 2012 or .... 2020?". Today's railways Europe, Issue 140: p. 10. August 2007.  
  5. ^ "Un "demi-TGV" fonctionnera entre Perpignan et Barcelone dès 2010 (French)". La Clau. 9.1.2009. http://www.la-clau.net/noticia/un-demi-tgv-fonctionnera-entre-perpignan-et-barcelone-des-2010-1584. Retrieved 30 January 2009.  

External links


Madrid-Barcelona-Perpignan high-speed rail line
Line length:621 km (386 mi)
Gauge:1,435 mm (4 ft 8+12 in) (Standard)
Princpal Stations and structures
0.0 km Madrid
to Seville
64.4 km Guadalajara-Yebes
221.1 km Calatayud
272.9 km Plasencia de Jalón
294.9 km Bif. Moncasí
306.7 km Zaragoza-Delicias
Tardienta
Huesca
434.6 km Les Torres de Sanuí
442.1 km Lleida Pirineus
448.6 km Artesa
512.8 km Corredor Mediterráneo
520.9 km Camp de Tarragona
Barcelona avoiding line
Barcelona–Vilanova
El Prat
Direction Can Tunis
620.9 km Barcelona Sants
Provença-Mallorca tunnel
Estació de la Sagrera
Barcelona avoiding line
Girona
Figueres
44.38 km International Section Ends
Pirineus Tunnel
French - Spanish Border
Perthus Tunnel (8,300 m)
File:BSicon exWBRÜ
Tec River
Elna to Arles line
File:BSicon exÜ
crossover
A9 Motorway
File:BSicon exBRÜ
D612A road
File:BSicon exWBRÜ
Rand River
0.00 km International Section starts
Classic line to Vilafranca de Conflent
Le Soler
Classic line to Portbou
Perpignan
Classic line powered at 1.5kV
Nimes
LGV Méditerranée to Paris

The Madrid-Barcelona high-speed rail line is a 621-kilometre (Template:Convert/LoffAonSon) standard gauge railway line inaugurated on 20 February 2008. Designed for speeds of 300 km/h (186 mph) and compatibility with neighbouring countries' rail systems, it connects the cities of Madrid and Barcelona, in Spain. Work is underway to extend the line into France to connect with the European high speed network in 2012.

Contents

First stages

In 2003 construction of the first phase of a new standard gauge line from Madrid to the French border (Madrid–Zaragoza–Lleida) was completed and on 11 October of that year commercial service began. This service also stopped at Guadalajara–Yebes and Calatayud. The service began running at only 200 km/h (124 mph). On 19 May 2006, after two years of operation, speed was increased to 250 km/h (155 mph) when the Spanish ASFA signalling system was replaced with level 1 of the new European ETCS/ERTMS system. On 16 October 2006 the trains on this line increased their operating speed to 280 km/h (174 mph).

On the 18 December 2006 the AVE started operating to Camp de Tarragona, and on 7 May 2007 the service increased its speed to the maximum allowable for the line, 300 km/h (186 mph). This puts Tarragona at 30 minutes from Lleida. The extension to Barcelona was delayed various times due to technical problems; the Ministerio de Formento having originally forecast the AVE's arrival in Barcelona by the end of 2007.[1]

Complete operation

The complete line was opened February 2008. As of 2008, seventeen trains now run every day between the hours of 6 am and 9 pm, covering the distance between the two cities in just 2 hours 38 minutes, except for those stopping at all stations, which take 3 hours. Before the high-speed line was built, the journey between the two cities took more than six hours; and when the high speed line went only as far as Tarragona, 3 hours 45 minutes, operated with the Alvia service (120 series train), which continued on the conventional line to Barcelona, after a change of rail gauge.

Speed

It was originally forecast that, after reaching Barcelona in 2004, the line would run at 350 km/h (217 mph), the maximum capable speed of the new Siemens AVE trains which have replaced the Talgo Bombardier AVE S102, after the installation of level 2 of the ETCS/ERTMS, which is scheduled to be installed in 2008. But on the AVE's first day of operating at 300 km/h (186 mph) to Tarragona the Minister of Public Works, Magdalena Álvarez, stated that the maximum commercial operating speeds of the AVE on all lines would be 300 km/h (186 mph).[2]

Usage

It is forecast that the AVE will substantially replace air traffic on the Barcelona - Madrid route (in the same way that the Eurostar has on the London-Paris/London-Brussels routes and France's TGV has on the Paris-Lyon route). In fact, more than 80% of travellers between Madrid and Seville use the AVE, with fewer than 20% travelling by air.[3]. The route Madrid-Barcelona was in 2007 the world's busiest passenger air route with 971 scheduled flights per week (both directions). In order to compete with each other RENFE has made, and Iberia will make, changes to their fare structures, as well as changing services; Iberia plans to use smaller planes which will leave as soon as full, and a non-stop AVE service is available between the two cities.

Criticism

There was much criticism during the construction of the Madrid-Barcelona line. A highly critical report by the consulting firm KPMG, commissioned by ADIF (Administrador de Infraestructuras Ferroviarias) at the behest of the Ministry for Public Works (Ministerio de Fomento) on June 23 2004, pointed to a lack of in-depth studies and over-hasty execution of works as the most important reasons for the problems that dogged construction of the AVE line. For example, during the construction of the AVE tunnel near Barcelona, a number of nearby buildings suffered minor damage from a large sinkhole that appeared near a commuter rail station, damaging one of its platforms. The construction committee of Barcelona's famed Sagrada Familia church lobbied for a re-routing of the tunnel - it passes within metres of the massive church's foundations. It also passes equally near the UNESCO-recognized Casa Milà also designed by Antoni Gaudi.

trains at Barcelona Sants railway station]]

Furthermore, until 2005 both Siemens and Talgo/Bombardier train sets failed to meet scheduled speed targets, although in a test run during the homologation tests of the new S102 trains of RENFE, a train-set Talgo 350 (AVE S-102) reached a speed of 365 km/h (227 mph) on the night of the 25th to the 26th of June, and on July 2006 a Siemens Velaro train-set (AVE S-103) reached the highest top speed ever in Spain: 403.7 km/h (250.8 mph). This is a Spanish record for railed vehicles and a world record for unmodified commercial service trainsets, as the earlier TGV and ICE records were achieved with specially modified and shortened trainsets, and the Shinkansen (Template:Convert/LoffAonD/Soff, 1996) record was for a test (non-commercial) trainset.

Extension to France

Work has begun to extend beyond Barcelona and across the France border to Perpignan, connecting with the high speed train service on the LGV Méditerranée to Paris and beyond. Originally planned to open in 2009, high speed trains are expected to start running in 2012. There have been delays in building a four kilometre tunnel in Girona, and controversy over the route between Sants and Sagrera stations in Barcelona. [4]

Perpignan to Figueres

This international high speed line is scheduled to open in February 2009. The 44.4 km long line will cross the French-Spanish border between Perpignan and Figueres through an 8.3 km tunnel bored under the Col du Perthus. The line will be open to high speed trains and freight. Through services to Barcelona using the classic line from Figueres to Barcelona are planned from summer 2010. The one and half hour journey is two hours quicker than currently via Portbou and Cerbère.[5]

International Services

When the line is completed trains will be able to travel between the two countries without stopping, although this will require dual-current trainsets. The LGV Méditerranée reaches as far as Nimes, requiring trains to use the classic line from Nimes to Perpignan, which is electrified to 1.5 kV DC, not 25 kV 50 Hz used on high-speed rail lines. Perpignan is currently serviced daily by four dual-current TGV Duplex services to Paris and two services to Lille and beyond.

Effects on travel

The beginning of service on this line should greatly improve passenger journey times. Travel times between Paris and Barcelona are projected at 5 hours 35 minutes, and Madrid to Perpignan at 3 hours 50 minutes. Rail journeys of less than 4 hours are generally considered to be competitive with airlines. From Barcelona, several destinations in southern France are likely to be within this range, such as Marseilles, Lyon and Toulouse.

See also

References

  1. La Vanguardia, 18 December 2006
  2. La Vanguardia, 7 May 2007
  3. Juan Carlos Martín and Gustavo Nombela, "Microeconomic impacts of investments in high speed trains in Spain", Annals of Regional Science, vol. 41, no. 3, September, 2007
  4. "Perpignan-Barcelona AVE to open in 2012 or .... 2020?". Today's railways Europe, Issue 140: p. 10. August 2007. 
  5. "Un "demi-TGV" fonctionnera entre Perpignan et Barcelone dès 2010 Template:Fr". La Clau. 9.1.2009. http://www.la-clau.net/noticia/un-demi-tgv-fonctionnera-entre-perpignan-et-barcelone-des-2010-1584. Retrieved on 30 January 2009. 

External links

Template:Commonscat








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