The Inter-Ministerial Committee for Economic Strategy in Italy (Cipe) has approved the high-speed line project to link the cities of Brescia and Verona worth EUR 2.5 billion. The green light from the Inter-Ministerial Committee means that construction works can begin at the end of 2017 or the beginning of 2018 at the latest.
The same committee has set the EUR 1.89 billion sum as limit for the costs of the first batch of works which includes the construction of a 7.4-km tunnel, at Lonato del Garda. The tunnel will allow trains to run independently of the rest of the traffic. This is the most comprehensive and costly part of the high-speed railway and that is why it is included in the first batch of construction works.
Thus, the new railway will start from Mazzano, near Brescia, then reaching Verona, following a 75-km route with two connections to the conventional rail network, both measuring 7 km.
The authorities estimate that works on the entire Brescia-Verona section will be completed between 2022-2023.
At the end of 2014, Rete Ferroviaria Italiana (RFI), the Italian rail infrastructure manager, awarded a contract worth EUR 768 million contract to Cepav consortium for the execution of civil engineering works. The consortium includes Saipem (52%), Società Italiana Condotte d’Acqua (12%), G Maltauro (12%) and Pizzarotti (24%).
The project is a major one for the railway industry, but also an excellent measure for connecting Adriatic Sea ports to the European railway network.