New viaduct on Palermo – Catania line installed

Buttaceto viaduct Webuild has completed the installation of the Buttaceto viaduct that will allow trains travelling across the Bicocca – Catenanuova section of the Palermo – Catania line to pass over the Buttaceto River.

The metal structure was assembled on site. It was then raised in place by means of a complex manoeuvre. With the use of hydraulic pistons, the viaduct’s deck was slid across reinforced cement beams and metal supports by an estimated 20 metres a day until it reached the desired spot. The manoeuvre saved on time and materials used. The remaining work on the deck will be completed in the next few days so that once completed the viaduct will be ready to receive in the next months the electrical and other fixtures for the new rail line.

The Buttaceto viaduct measures approximately 62 metres in length and 750 tonnes in weight, the equivalent of four Boeing 747s, Webuild says.

The construction of the section includes more than 300 direct suppliers, most of them local, and nearly 400 direct and indirect workers. The Bicocca – Catenanuova section is part of the line which will connect Palermo and Catania in less than two hours. It is the biggest infrastructure project under construction in Sicily.

The viaduct is an important part of the Palermo – Catania line project, located in a strategic position in the trajectory of the railway for more than 37 km. The project will have trains travel between the two cities at speeds of up to 200 km/h and will therefore transform mobility on the island, along with other rail projects performed by Webuild. In 2021, Webuild won a EUR 640 million design and construction contract to double the Palermo – Catania – Messina line in Sicily. The company will work on the Fiumefreddo – Taormina and Taormina – Letojanni sections of the high-capacity line between Messina and Catania. The contract covers the construction of the 15 km double track, and underground station at Taormina and Fogliarino and Alcantara viaducts.

In addition, the company in consortium with Pizzarotti (30%) was awarded a EUR 1 billion contract for the construction of the second functional lot of the Taormina – Giampilieri rail section.

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