Faster rail journeys from Madrid to Murcia

This project involves the construction of the train platform (and related control devices) for 4 sub-sections of the new high-speed rail line: Madrid – Castile La Mancha – Valencia Community – Murcia Region.

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The project result will raise the competitiveness of the rail lines connecting Madrid with cities right along the corridor (Madrid, Cuenca, Albacete, Valencia, Alicante, Castellón and Murcia) by significantly reducing travel times and bringing regions isolated geographically into the picture.

Bringing tracks up to scratch

The four stretches targeted by the project, including 9 viaducts, are:

  • Elche – Crevillente: length of sub-section 5 560 metres, passing through Elche and Crevillente, in Alicante.
  • Crevillente – San Isidro: length of sub-section 6 760 metres, passing through Crevillente, San Isidro, Albatera and Callosa de Segura, in Alicante.
  • Orihuela – Colada de la Buena Vida: length of sub-section 2 740 metres, passing through Orihuela, in Alicante.
  • Colada de la Buena Vida – Murcia: length of sub-section 7 280 metres passing through Orihuela, Alicante, and the cities of Beniel and Murcia in the province of Murcia.

The works will include earthmoving, tunnel works, re-establishment of services, building transversal connections and drainage and will ensure that the platform meets international standards and can fully integrate into Trans-European Transport Networks.

Access to coastal tourism

Users of this ‘Mediterranean corridor’ are the main beneficiaries and will enjoy much faster journeys. For example, Madrid to Valencia will take 90 minutes rather than the current 202, or Madrid to Alicante 125 minutes instead of 235. There will also be a marked improvement in terms of accessibility to tourism opportunities, notably for people heading from the centre of the Peninsula to the Mediterranean. Furthermore, the project will have an impact on employment, with 14 483 jobs created during the construction phase, another 1 167 once the new infrastructure is fully operational.

Out of cars, onto trains

In view of the fact that train transport is less polluting than cars, the main environmental benefits stem from the change in the transport methods used along the corridor covered by the project. At present, the share is as follows: vehicles 59%, rail 19% (the remainder being bus and plane); post-project, the share is forecast to be: vehicles 42%, rail 37%.