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Levante line takes shape

02 Jan 2009

SPAIN: Construction and fitting out works are proceeding apace on the high speed line which will link Madrid with Valencia and the Murcia region.

With the first section scheduled to open in 2010, work is well advanced on the high speed line connecting Madrid with Valencia and the Murcia region. Designed for 350 km/h, the route runs for 363 km from a junction with the Madrid - Sevilla line at Torrejón de Velasco to Valencia, with a 77 km branch from Motilla del Palancar to Albacete.

Due to be completed in the spring of 2009, the 6·5 km Embalse de Contreras - Villargordo del Gabriel section is being built a consortium of Azvi and Constructora San José, under a contract awarded by infrastructure authority ADIF with a budget of €110m. Engineering and technical support is being provided by Sener Ingeniería y Sistemas. This section skirts the ecologically-sensitive Contreras reservoir area, including a viaduct 587 m long and 43·5 m above water level.

Sener is also providing consultancy and other services for management of the overhead line contracts on the sections from Motilla del Palancar to Valencia and Albacete, totalling 225 km of double track.

As part of a €430m package of works announced earlier this year, ADIF awarded a €93·7m contract for installation and maintenance of the overhead electrification on the 220 km between Torrejón de Velasco and Motilla del Palancar to a joint venture of Semi, Cobra and Balfour Beatty Ibérica. Alstom Transporte, Elecnor, Electrón and Isolux Ingeniería are to maintain the traction substations and auto­transformers on this section under a separate contract worth €87·7m, while GSM-R is to be installed by Nokia Siemens Networks for €53·5m.

Another 11 contracts totalling almost €215m were placed at the end of October for infrastructure, signalling, telecommunications and trackwork on the new line, whilst further consultancy work has also been tendered.

Vías y Construcciones SA was awarded a €24·7m contract for Phase 1 of the new alignment into Valencia. The work will take nine months. Aldesa Construcciones SA won the Phase 2 contract worth €61·2m to build a temporary high speed station and provide standard-gauge access into the city; this is expected to take 18 months.

Thales will provide signalling, train protection, telecommunications and CTC for the junction with the Madrid - Sevilla high speed line, at a cost of €9·4m. Thales is working with Dimetronic in a consortium to supply the signalling and train control systems for the whole line under a €585m contract awarded earlier this year (RG 8.08 p474). Thought to be the biggest ERTMS contract awarded to date, this covers ETCS Level 1 and 2, interlockings and track circuits, along with power supplies and related services.