SPAIN’s Ministry of Development has invited bids for consultancy work on the Zaragoza - Tardienta portion of the project to create a 1435mm gauge electrified route between Zaragoza and the French border at Canfranc. Part of the government’s 2000-07 Railway Infrastructure Plan, this project is costed at Pts60bn.

With a total budget of Pts190m, the contracts out to tender cover 51 km of the existing Zaragoza - Lleida route as far as the junction for the Canfranc line at Tardienta, where a third rail for 1435mm traffic is to be installed and 50 level crossings removed. Subsequent contracts will cover conversion of Tardienta - Huesca to 1435mm gauge, plus signalling and electrification work from Huesca to Zaragoza to permit a 35min journey time from the end of 2002.