Photo: Javier Lopez

SPAIN: ADIF has invited tenders for electrification of the single-track route from Zaragoza to Sagunt, which forms part of the Mediterranean Corridor linking ports near Valencia with the industrial hinterlands of the north.


The budgeted cost of electrification is €42∙6m and the work is expected to take 24 months to complete. Related civil works will include improving clearances at 13 stations and altering 85 bridges and 10 tunnels.

To ensure compatibility with sections of the national high speed network currently being built for mixed traffic, such as the ‘Basque Y’, ADIF has opted to energise the line at 25 kV 50 Hz. This should permit express passenger services to run at up to 200 km/h on those sections of the line which have been realigned.

The rural route through Teruel had been threatened with closure in 2000 after a spate of derailments, but an initial reprieve prompted the realignment of two sections of the route at the northern end between Teruel and Zaragoza. A further government review in 2012 led to further doubts, but the line’s future was secured when General Motors asked to run automotive trains over the direct route from Valencia to Zaragoza, rather than via Tarragona. This eventually led to the launch in 2017 of a modernisation programme worth €385m, focused on enhancing rail freight access between Valencia and the north.

The renewal of the infrastructure to date has already raised the capacity of the line, which now carries around 30 freight trains per day, a 10-fold increase on the number seen prior to the upgrading project. ADIF says the electrification should offer a further boost to traffic and facilitate the operation of 750 m long trains.