PROPOSALS to reopen the 64 km railway between Nantes and Châteaubriant as a tram-train route were unveiled for public consultation by the Pays-de-la-Loire region last month. This paves the way for a detailed planning study costing €4m.

To be completed by the end of 2009, the project will see the restoration of passenger services to the line along the Erdre valley after an absence of 25 years. There will be 10 stops, of which six will be located in the eastern and northwestern suburbs of Nantes. Starting from the main station, the tram-train services would interchange at Haluchère with TAN light rail Route 1.

According to RFF officials, the infrastructure on the route will need total renewal. The cost is put at €98m, covering track, signalling, level crossings and stations but excluding electrification. A further €24·5m has been allowed for the purchase of rolling stock.

In the longer term, a branch may be built to serve the city’s planned airport at Notre-Dame-des-Landes, which is scheduled to open in 2012.