Crucial infrastructure for the second track of Divača-Koper railway line, Slovenia

A tunnel and two viaducts will be constructed through a project which forms part of a wider scheme to provide a second railway track between the port of Koper and the village of Divača in western Slovenia. The new line is seen as essential to deal with growing demand along the route.

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The Divača-Koper railway line and the location of the T8 tunnel and V1 and V2 viaducts. ©European Union The Divača-Koper railway line and the location of the T8 tunnel and V1 and V2 viaducts. ©European Union

The tunnel being built in this specific project is known as T8 and will be 3 808 m long. The viaducts, known as V1 and V2, will be 452 m and 647 m long respectively. In addition to building the new infrastructure, this project covers supervision of works and external quality control and the monitoring of geotechnical, hydro-geological, environmental and ecological issues. 

All the tunnels built as part of this new railway line will have space for firefighting equipment and the safe and speedy evacuation of passengers and staff in case of an emergency.

The wider scheme is for the construction of 26.95 km of rail track, including 25. 87 km of new line and a 1.08 km deviation of an existing section of track near Divača. The new line will run through challenging terrain and cover an altitude gain of about 400 m. Therefore, to ensure the maximum gradient of the track does not exceed 1.7 %, it will run through eight tunnels, which have a total length of 20 km, and across several bridging structures.

Meeting demand

The existing line is very important to international rail freight and forms part of the EU’s Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T) that links the Baltic and Mediterranean regions. The port of Koper connects Slovenia and other central European countries with overseas market routes. In fact, two-thirds of cargo from the port is intended for central Europe and only one third for the Slovenian market. However, growing demand from freight users is putting pressure on the existing single railway line between Divača and Koper. This is causing bottlenecks and delays in the core network and hinders freight transport to and from the port. 

Smoother journeys

The current route is vulnerable to landslides in its more mountainous sections. In addition, the track is exposed to significant fire risk caused by the braking of trains on some of the steeper sections. The severity of the risk is increased due to the inaccessibility of the terrain.

Construction of the second track between Divača and Koper will smooth rail traffic over the entire corridor, thereby improving or preserving the already favourable modal split in favour of rail. If the scheme is successful in moving traffic from road to rail, it will help reduce CO2 and nitrogen oxide emissions. Interoperability will be ensured in accordance with European standards and the optimisation of both the capacity and efficiency of the railway infrastructure.

 

Total investment and EU funding

Total investment for the project “Part of the Second track of Divača-Koper railway line” is EUR 1 233 538 144, with the EU’s Cohesion Fund contributing EUR 80 000 000 through the “Operational Programme for the Implementation of the EU Cohesion Policy” for the 2014-2020 programming period. The investment falls under the priority “Construction of infrastructure and measures for promoting sustainable mobility”.

 

Draft date

07/01/2020