SPAIN: An agreement to build and operate a rail motorway terminal in the Port of Barcelona has been signed by the government of Catalunya and SNCF subsidiary VIIA.

The terminal will be open to any operator, offering capacity to accommodate eight trains per day carrying unaccompanied lorry trailers to and from France and central and northern Europe.

The agreement ‘is excellent news for multimodal transport’, said VIIA Chairman Thierry Le Guilloux, adding that it ‘paves the way for an innovative and environmentally friendly mode of transport’ which would offer a real alternative to road transport.

Minister for Territory & Sustainability Damià Calvet said the project was important for the regional government as it was expected to revitalise the economy, create jobs and help to decarbonise transport to tackle climate change.

SNCF’s rail motorway subsidiary VIIA currently operates rail motorway services on five routes, from Bettembourg in Luxembourg to Barcelona and Le Boulou on the Franco-Spanish border, from Calais to Orbassano (Torino) and Le Boulou, and from Aiton (Chambéry) to Orbassano.