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Around thirty rail freight services will suffer delays and a cost increase due to nearly three months of upgrade works on the railway that links Zaragoza with Sagunto Port. This 315 kilometres-long railway line runs through Teruel and terminates just north of Valencia. The works are carried out between 9 July and 5 October 5 at a total budget of 100 million Euros.
Rail freight operators can use complementary routes through Tarragona (Catalonia) and Madrid, extending the distance between 170 and 400 kilometres. This traffic alteration may push up rail costs up till 15 Euros per kilometre for each train, according to the Spanish rail freight industry.
The civil works will disrupt freight and passenger services in a time period when traffic between Aragon and Valencia is very dense due to summer tourism on the Spanish coast.
The Spanish national rail company Renfe is set to invest 0.8 million Euros to provide coach transfers for passengers. On the other hand, cargo operators will have to bear their transport costs. Renfe explained that this upgrade will eventually increase cargo traffic and thus income for rail operators.
Once the upgrade works are completed, there will be handling facilities for 740-metre length trains. Moreover, it will eliminate the 30 km/hour speed limitation in the area close to Jiloca river. In addition, Spanish manager of infrastructure Adif is planning to electrify this rail network in 2023, with a total budget of 297.6 million Euros.
This article first appeared on www.railfreight.com
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