Work on the first phase of the high-speed, high-capacity Verona to Padua railway line will start this year, according to the Italian government.
The aim of the project is to quadruple the entire Verona-Padua line, including relocating the old line where the two tracks are very close to each other.
The first phase of the project – the “Verona-Vicenza Junction” – is valued at €2.41bn (£2.14bn), while the total cost of the project is approximately £4.45bn.
The line, which will be built by the Iricav Due consortium, will cross the provinces of Verona, Vicenza and Padua, forming part of the Verona-Venice line. The consortium includes contractors Salini Impregilo, Astaldi, Società Italiana per Condotte d’Acqua, Lamaro Appalti and Fintecna.
Italy’s infrastructure and transport minister Graziano Delrio confirmed the announcement for the first phase of the project, while the other two remaining phases – crossing Vicenza and connecting Vicenza and Padua – are expected to be given approval by the end of 2016.
The new high-speed, double-track line will be approximately 76.5km long. The first phase of the project involves a total high-speed, high-capacity line length of 44.2km, of which 35.6km will run on open ground, 6.2km on viaducts and 2.3km in tunnels.
The Verona-Padua section is part of major infrastructure planning at both Italian and European level, forming an integral part of the east-west Turin-Milan-Venice line, which is a component of the Mediterranean Corridor of the Trans-European Transport Network.