ITALY: RFI inaugurated a new station to serve Fontanarossa airport in Catania on March 13, built as part of its ongoing programme to modernise the main line between Messina and Palermo in Sicily.

Featuring two 200 m long and 550 mm high platforms on a double-track alignment, the station is equipped with ramps and lifts.

Construction began in February 2019, and has been undertaken at a cost €6·5m, fully funded by the infrastructure manager. The station is intended to facilitate access by rail to the airport from across Sicily; an initial 50 trains per day will connect it with Messina, Siracusa, Caltanissetta, Caltagirone and Palermo. As demand grows, services are expected to increase to up to 80 daily.

The station is located a few hundred meters from the airport entrance, but is also linked via a free shuttle bus service operated by municipal transport operator Amt. An elevated walkway is planned in the medium term. The city also plans to extend its metro network to the airport by 2026.