The Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport, together with the National Railway Safety Agency (ANSF), rejected a project submitted by Rete Ferroviaria Italiana (RFI) aimed at increasing the maximum speed on certain sections of the high-speed network from 300 km/h at 350 km/h.
Thus, the two state bodies have manifested themselves against the plan proposed by the railway infrastructure manager, motivating both technical and economic issues. In conclusion, the disadvantages of the Rete Ferroviaria Italiana’s initiative would be much greater than the benefits brought.
On the other hand, one of the most important benefits, if the speed would increase to 350 km/h, would reduce journey times. For example, travelling on 568 kilometers long Rome-Milan route would be reduced by 10 minutes. This is currently performed in 2h 55 min with the Frecciarossa 1000 series high speed trains.
However, both the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport and the ANSF believe that the increase in electricity consumption and the increase in operating costs would be too high to justify journey times’ reducing or the assumption of increasing high speed train traffic.
The decision is mainly motivated by the risk of higher maintenance costs for the railway network, which belongs to the State.
In addition, the tests carried out in recent months with Frecciarossa and Italo trains also revealed some problems related to the structure of the railways.