SPAIN: On February 9 Catalan regional operator FGC introduced a new timetable on its metre-gauge route to Martorell, Igualada and Manresa, having completed a €264·7m programme of capacity enhancements to enable trains to operate every 5 min in the peaks between Barcelona Plaça d'Espanya and Martorell-Enllaç. Trains now operate every 20 min in the peaks on the routes from Martorell to Igualada and Manresa.
Key to the project has been the doubling of 20 km of track between Sant Boi de Llobregat and Martorell, involving the construction of new underground stations at Pallejà and Sant Andreu de la Barca at a cost of €79m. Work between El Palau and Martorell, including changes to the alignment to serve a new interchange with RENFE at Martorell-Central, has cost €40·2m while Martorell - Olesa de Montserrat has been doubled for €28·1m.
With the removal of 14 crossings at a cost of €2·8m, there are now no level crossings between Barcelona and Martorell. The acquisition of 13 additional EMUs has cost a further €69·6m and work to upgrade the traction power supply totalled €21·6m.