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The high-speed line next to the Autostrada A1 near Pieve Fissiraga
Santiago Calatrava's bridge over the new railway and the Autostrada A1 near Reggio Emilia

The Milan–Bologna high-speed railway is a link in the Italian high-speed rail network a railway line that links the cities of Milan and Bologna. It parallels the important historical north-south railway between Milan and Bologna, which itself follows the ancient Roman Road, the Via Aemilia. The new railway follows the Autostrada A1 closely for much of its length. To distinguish the two lines, the operator of the national railway network, Rete Ferroviaria Italiana, refers to the historical line as the Linea Tradizionale ("traditional line") and to the new line as the Linea Alta Velocità/ Alta Capacità (high speed/ high capacity line). The two lines allow the operation of faster and slower traffic to be separated when necessary and together provide substantial capacity for fast and slow passenger trains and freight trains.

The line is part of Corridor 1 of the European Union's Trans-European high-speed rail network, which connects Berlin and Palermo. From the Milano Centrale to Bologna Centrale stations, the line is 214.694 kilometers long, with trains taking 1 hour and 5 minutes to cover it. The first section of it on the outskirts of Milan was opened in 1997. A 15 km section between Bologna and Modena was opened for freight traffic in September 2006 and for passenger traffic in October 2007. The rest of the route was opened to commercial traffic on 13 December 2008 to coincide with the main European timetable change. In December 2009, the Bologna–Florence high-speed line, the remaining Milan-Novara section of the Milan–Turin high-speed line and the Gricignano di AversaNaples section of the Rome–Naples high-speed line opened to traffic, substantially completing the high speed line from Turin to Salerno, except for planned new stations at Bologna and Florence.

Contents

History

Legend
Head station
0.000 Milano Centrale
Junction to left
to Domodossola and Turin (high-speed and traditional)
Junction to left
(to Chiasso and Lecco)
Junction from left
Ring line / from Milano Greco Pirelli
Unknown route-map component "S+BHF"
3.779 Milano Lambrate
Junction to left Track turning from right
"Bologna" line (L) / Cintura ("belt") line (R)
Junction to left Unknown route-map component "KRZu"
to Venice and Verona HSL
Unknown route-map component "ÜWol" Unknown route-map component "ÜWur"
Unknown route-map component "ÜWu+l" Unknown route-map component "ÜWo+r"
Junction from left Unknown route-map component "KRZo"
from Venice
Unknown route-map component "KRZo" Unknown route-map component "KRZo"
Passante (Pioltello branch)
Track turning left Junction from right
Track turning from right Straight track
Passante (Rogoredo branch)
Unknown route-map component "KRZu" Unknown route-map component "ABZrd"
Southern ring line
Unknown route-map component "KSBHFe" Station on track
9.567 Milano Rogoredo
Junction to right
to Genoa
Track turning from left Junction to right
traditional line (L) / HSL (R)
Abbreviated in this map Unknown route-map component "AKRZu"
Autostrada A1
Stop on track Straight track
San Donato Milanese
Enter and exit tunnel Enter and exit tunnel
Stop on track Straight track
Borgolombardo
Unknown route-map component "ÜWul" Unknown route-map component "ÜWor"
Unknown route-map component "ÜWo+l" Unknown route-map component "ÜWu+r"
Bridge over water Abbreviated in this map
Lambro river
Unknown route-map component "eABZlf" Unknown route-map component "eABZlg"
Sordio interconnection (dismantled)
Straight track Stop on track
San Giuliano Milanese
Straight track Station on track
Melegnano
Straight track Stop on track
San Zenone al Lambro
Junction to left Junction from right
191.220/23.474 Melegnano interconnection
Straight track Station on track
28+095 Tavazzano
Straight track Track turning left
to Lodi
Unknown route-map component "KMW"
190.229 Signalling boundary
Straight track
Non-passenger station on track
166.252 P.M.[1] Livraga
Unknown route-map component "KRZo"
Pavia - Codogno line
Enter tunnel
160.546 Start of Somaglia tunnel
Exit tunnel
159.527 End of Somaglia tunnel
Junction to left Track turning from right
153.358 (0.000) Piacenza west interconnection
Junction from left Unknown route-map component "KRZo"
(3.519) P.M. Piacenza west (from Lodi)
Abbreviated in this map Bridge over water
Po River
Abbreviated in this map Unknown route-map component "AKRZo"
Autostrada A21
Station on track Straight track
Piacenza
Junction to right Straight track
to Fidenza
Unknown route-map component "xABZlf" Unknown route-map component "KRZo"
to Cremona
Unknown route-map component "exSTRlf" Unknown route-map component "eABZlg"
139.693 Piacenza east interconnection (to be opened)
Track change
135+853 P.M. Piacenza
Straight track
Unknown route-map component "exSTRrg" Unknown route-map component "eABZrf"
119.926 Fidenza west interconnection (to be opened)
Unknown route-map component "xABZrg" Unknown route-map component "KRZo"
from Cremona
Junction from right Straight track
from Piacenza
Station on track Straight track
Fidenza
Track turning right Straight track
to Parma
Straight track
Track change
108.699 P.C.[2] Fontanellato
Enter tunnel
106.442 Start of Fontanellato tunnel
Exit tunnel
104.899 End of Fontanellato tunnel
Bridge over water
Taro river
Straight track
Track turning from right Straight track
from Fidenza
Station on track Straight track
Parma
Junction to right Straight track
to Modena
Junction to left Unknown route-map component "KRZo"
to Brescia
Unknown route-map component "xABZlf" Unknown route-map component "KRZo"
to Suzzara
Unknown route-map component "exSTRlf" Unknown route-map component "eABZlg"
85.598 Parma east interconnection (to be opened)
Straight track
Non-passenger station on track
72.860 P.M. Campegine
Straight track
Non-passenger station on track
63.481 P.M. Reggio Emilia AV
Straight track
Track change
52.835 P.C. Rubiera crossovers
Straight track
Unknown route-map component "exSTRrg" Unknown route-map component "eABZrf"
44.362 Modena west interconnection (to be opened)
Unknown route-map component "xABZrg" Unknown route-map component "KRZo"
from Mantua
Junction from right Straight track
from Parma
Station on track Straight track
Modena
Abbreviated in this map Bridge over water
Panaro river
Abbreviated in this map Straight track
Station on track Straight track
(6.012) Castelfranco Emilia
Junction to left Junction from right
(0.000) 18.996 Castelfranco east interconnection
Abbreviated in this map Straight track
Junction from left Junction to right
(0.000) 13.623 P.M. Anzola
Non-passenger station on track Straight track
(4.109) P.M. Lavino
Junction to left Unknown route-map component "KRZo"
Bologna ring line
Abbreviated in this map Unknown route-map component "AKRZu"
Autostrada A14
Abbreviated in this map Unknown route-map component "KMW"
4.620 Signalling boundary
Unknown route-map component "ABZ3lf" Unknown route-map component "ABZdg"
from Pistoia/from Verona
Station on track
4.158 Santa Viola
Junction from left
1.115 Lame underpass (from Padua)
Station on track
0.000 Bologna Centrale
Junction to right
To Florence (high-speed and traditional) / to Ancona

The proposal to build a high speed line from Milan to Bologna was announced by the rail operator, Ferrovie dello Stato (FS) in January 1988.[3] Subsequently progress on the proposal was slowed by legal action relating to various accusations of corruption, culminating in the Tangentopoli scandal. On 15 October 1991 FS established Treno Alta Velocità SpA (TAV) to plan, build and manage the Italian high-speed lines. It subsequently appointed the consortium of ENI/CEPAV UNO—composed of Snamprogetti (50.1%), Saipem (0.26%), Consorzio Cooperative Costruzioni (21.34%), Impresa Pizzarotti (14.15%) and Grandi Lavori Fincosit (14.15%)—to design the line. Its design was approved on 21 December 1993, leading to the commencement of the process to gain environmental and governmental approvals for the route. Final approvals were gained for the project in the Bologna area and between Milan and Parma on 23 July 1997 and for the rest of the route on 31 July 1998. On 15 March 2000, TAV, Italferr (FS's engineering division) and the ENI/CEPAV UNO consortium signed a contract to construct the line. This was initially expected to take 69 months and cost €4.9 billion. In fact, it ended up taking 96 months and costing €6.9 billion.[4][5]

The first section of the new Milan-Bologna was opened in 1997 was the addition of two lines to the original lines between Milan Rogoredo and Sordio junction in order to free the trunk line between and Rogoredo and San Zenone al Lambro from medium and long-distance trains that make no stops on the section. The new line was built to trunk line standards, rather than as a high-speed railway and was electrified at the traditional 3,000 V DC, rather than the 25 kV AC to be applied to the main high-speed section.

in 2002, construction of the rest of the new line commenced under the direction of TAV. On 29 May 2005 the new line was extended south to Melegnano-Tavazzano and the temporary junction at Sordi was closed.[6] On 11 September 2006 the trunkline between Castelfranco Emilia and Lavino was brought into operation,[7][8] while the section between Lavino and Santa Viola was opened on October 10, 2007.

In November 2007 the laying of tracks and the provision of technological systems and electrical equipment was completed for the rest of the new line. Testing of systems in preparation for its opening commenced on 16 December 2007. During these tests, at 17:23 on 1 March 2008, a new Italian record speed railway of 355 km / h was set by an ETR 500-Y near Parma according to the Italian news media. This beat the previous record of 352.026 km / h which had been set at 17.35 on 25 May 2006 by a ETR 500-Y test train on the Torino–Novara section of the Milan–Turin high-speed line.

The railway line between Melegnano and Castelfranco east junctions was opened for training on 2 October 2008. Consequently, the tracks between the Melegnano and Tavazzano junctions and between Castelfranco station and Emilia Castefranco east junction became interconnection lines between the traditional and the AV-AC lines.[9] The opening of the line took place on 13 December 2008 with an inaugural trip made by an ETR 500 Frecciarossa, classified as ES* 29405, with a load of journalists and politicians.[10] The line was opened to commercial traffic the next day, with the introduction of the new Trenitalia timetable.[11][12]

Features of the line

The line follows the Autostrada A1 closely for 182 km of its 214 km length. Substantial viaducts total about 32 km of the total, although it includes only 3 km of tunnel, which were only required to minimise environmental impacts. The design-speed of the line was 300 km / h leading to the adoption of a minimum radius of curvature of 5,450 m—although in Modena restrictions on the route led to a minimum radius of 3,450 m limiting being adopted, limiting the maximum permitted speed to 240 km / h.

The railway line is a double-track standard gauge railway built with Vignoles profile 60 kg/m rail.[11] From Milano Centrale station to Melegnano junction and from Castelfranco east junction to Bologna Centrale station the line is electrified at 3 kV DC; in between those two section it is electricifed at 25 kV AC 50 hertz.[13] Interconnections with the traditional line are electrified at 3 kV DC.

Route

Milan railway junction

Starting from Milano Centrale station, trains bound for Bologna use the Milan ring railway or sometimes the Genova line, which links Milano Centrale with Milano Lambrate and Milano Rogoredo stations. During this journey, the train branches to the right at a junction with the "passenger" line, used by trains to and from the Milano–Domodossola line (to Domodossola, the Simplon Tunnel and Switzerland) and the Milan-Turin line to Turin. It branches to the right again at a junction with the Chiasso line (used by trains to and from Chiasso to the Gotthard Rail Tunnel and Switzerland), which also connects with the Milan-Lecco railway to Lecco.

At Milan Lambrate the ring railway connects with the lines from Milano Certosa station and to Milano Rogoredo. At Lambrate the Milan–Verona high-speed line (which was opened as far as Treviglio on 2 July 2007) and the traditional Milan–Venice line—which also connects to the "goods" line to Milan Smistamento (marshalling yard). After Lambrate, the Pioltello branch of the Milan Passante suburban railway passes under the line.

Milano Rogoredo to Piacenza east

At Milano Rogoredo station the high-speed line separates from the traditional line near San Giuliano Milanese so that it can bypass the centre of Melegnano. After Melegnano the high-speed line passes the location of the former Sordo junction, which was closed after the extension of the high-speed line to Melegnano junction at Tavazzano. After the old Sordo junction, the line separated from the traditional line and joins the Autostrada del Sole (A1 motorway). Trains to and from Lodi that do not need to stop between Rogoredo and Lodi can join the new line at Melegnano junction. At the junction the electrification of the high-speed line changes 3,000 V DC to 25,000 V AC 50 Hz, which is to be used on almost all high-speed lines in Italy. The signalling system also changes to the modern European Rail Traffic Management System (ERTMS) near the junction, at the 190.229 km mark (measured from Bologna).

At Somaglia the railway enters a 1019 metre-long cut-and-cover tunnel above which a park is being built to mitigate the environmental impact of the autostrada, which the line will move away from near Santo Stefano Lodigiano. To the south of this town is Piacenza west junction, where a line connects the AV/AC to the traditional Milan-Bologna line to serve Piacenza station, where passengers can change to and from trains operating on the traditional, the Alessandria-Voghera-Piacenza and the Cremona-Piacenza lines.

After Piacenza west junction, the railway runs on a viaduct across the traditional line and the Po River near the village of Olevano di Lomellina. After passing over the A21 motorway and the SS 10 highway, the line will connect with the rail Cremona-Piacenza line at the uncompleted Piacenza east junction, when it is opened to traffic, allowing trains between Piacenza and Bologna to travel on the high speed line.

From Piacenza east to Reggio Emilia AV station

Shortly after Piacenza east junction, the railway rejoins the A1 and runs next to it until P.M.[1] Piacenza, which has two crossovers to enable trains to transfer between tracks at up to 160 km/h, if necessary. Approximately 15 kilometers after P.M. Piacenza is Fidenza west junction, which enables trains to be routed via the Fidenza-Cremona line towards Fidenza station, where passengers can transfer to the Pontremoli line to La Spezia. The grade-separated junction—which is not yet open to traffic—is located near the village of Castione Marchesi.

Just north of the cut-and-cover tunnel where the line passes Fontanellato is P.C.[2] Fontanellato, which is an identical set of crossovers to P.C. Piacenza. The line crosses the Taro River east of the exit to the Fontanellato tunnel on a long viaduct, which continues for much of the route north of Parma. To the south-east of the village of Parma Chiozzola is the not yet-opened grade-separated junction at Parma east, which connects Parma station on the traditional line to the high-speed line towards Bologna. Parma station is a meeting point of several regional and state railways, the Pontremoli, the Parma-Brescia and the Parma-Suzzara lines, but the junction can also be used by direct trains between the Pontremoli line and Bologna. The interconnection between the high-speed and traditional lines at Parma east, unlike the others, required the redesign of some trackwork—connecting trains use the line from Suzzara (subsequently joining the line from Brescia) and their connection with the traditional line in Parma is being rebuilt.

After passing the East Parma east junction, the line continues besdide the A1. Near the village of La Razza in Campegine is P.M. Campegine, which has two crossovers that allow trains to transfer between tracks at up to 160 km/h. Another set of crossovers, P.M. Reggio Emilia AV, is located nine km further south, just to the north of the Reggio Emilia viaduct that overpasses the Reggio Emilia–Guastalla line near the fairground. This is currently only equipped with two temporary crossovers with a speed limit of 60 km/h on transferring trains. This is the site of the a planned railway station to the design of Santiago Calatrava, which would interchange with a planned regional rail line and buses. The station is estimated to cost €80 million and is expected to be completed in December 2010.[14]

From Reggio Emilia AV station to Bologna

After P.M. Reggio Emilia AV, the line continues to follow the A1 until P.C. Rubiera. This location service is located between the villages of Fontana and Osteria and has two 160 km/h crossovers. Further south the line moves away from A1 to the east in order to bypass the town of Modena to its north on a curve with a radius requires AV trains to observe lower than normal speed limits.

To the north of the village of Villanova is Modena west junction that allows the routing of trains on to the line to Mantua and Verona towards Modena station. After Modena west junction, the railway cuts through the countryside north of Modena and then bend towards the south-east in the direction of Castelfranco Emilia and Manzolini. Near the town of Castelfranco Cavazzona is the Castelfranco east junction, where the line rejoins the traditional line. At this junction trains between Modena and Bologna change between the high speed and traditional lines. The voltage change bewtween 25,000 V AC 3000 V DC occurs at this point.

At Anzola dell'Emilia is P.M. Anzola dell'Emilia, which is a junction that allows trains to connect to P.M. Lavino, on the traditional line in order to connect with take the ring railway around Bologna. Shortly before Santa Viola station, the ERTMS signaling system chages to the traditional Italian signallying system. Between Santa Viola and Bologna Centrale station high-speed trains are routed on to the dual track of the Verona-Bologna line, which then immediately joins the traditional line and the Porrettana railway from Pistoia.

Services

Trenitalia commenced services on the line on 14 December 2008, with 24 Eurostar AV services operating between Milan and Rome in each direction each day. Most of these stop at Bologne and Florence and take 3 hours 59 minutes. Ten services southbound and nine services northbound operate non-stop, taking 3 hours 30 minutes—these are branded as Eurostar AV Fast. An additional Eurostar also operates each day each way, stopping at Piacenza, Fidenza, Parma, Reggio Emilia and Modena and taking 4 hours and 58 minutes. When the Bologna–Florence high-speed line is opened the AV Fast services are expected to take 2 hours 45 minutes.[12][15]

Notes

  1. ^ a b "Posto di movimento", that is a passing loop, allowing slower trains to be overtaken.
  2. ^ a b "Posti di comunicazione", that is a crossover.
  3. ^ (in Italian) Carta delle ferrovie d'Italia. Mappa della Ferrovia che cambia (Map of railways in Italy. Changing railway map). Rome: Ferrovie dello Stato, Corporate relations office. 1988.  
  4. ^ (in Italian) Le linee in costruzione AV-TuttoTreno Tema, no. 22. 2007.  
  5. ^ Milano–Bologna HSL opens. Today's Railways Europe. March 2009. pp. 22–28.  
  6. ^ (in Italian) Circolari compartimentali (Departmental circular) Milan 17/2005. RFI. 2005. pp. 1–7.  
  7. ^ (in Italian) Circolari compartimentali (Departmental circular) Bologna 17/2007. RFI. 2007. p. 3.  
  8. ^ HSL opens to passenger services. Today's Railways Europe. January 2008. p. 61.  
  9. ^ (in Italian) Circolari compartimentali (Departmental circular) Bologna 22/2008 and Milan 56/2008. RFI. 2008. pp. 1–5.  
  10. ^ "FSNews - 16.19 il primo Frecciarossa inaugura la nuova linea AV" (in Italian). Ferrovie dello Stato. 13 December 2008. http://www.fsnews.it/cms/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=8d613cfd9b03e110VgnVCM1000003f16f90aRCRD. Retrieved 16 January 2009.  
  11. ^ a b (in Italian) Circolari compartimentali (Departmental circular) Bologna 31/2008 and Milano 71/2008. RFI. 2008. pp. 1–3.  
  12. ^ a b "Trenitalia reshapes AV services". Railway Gazette International 165 (1): 8. January 2009.  
  13. ^ Fascicolo Linea 82 bis. RFI. pp. 92 ff..  
  14. ^ New HS station at Reggio Emilia. Today's Railways Europe. January 2008. p. 60.  
  15. ^ "Timetable" (in Italian). Trenitalia. http://trenitalia.com/. Retrieved 11 February 2009.  

References

  • (in Italian) Fascicolo Linea 82 bis - AV/AC Torino – Milano – Napoli Tratto di linea Milano Rogoredo – Firenze Castello e relative interconnessioni con linea Milano – Bologna – Firenze (Tradizionale). Rete Ferroviaria Italiana. pp. 90–119 and 150-179.  

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