Rete Ferroviaria Italiana has awarded a EUR1.3 billion (US$1,398 million) contract to build a 30 km stretch of the Palermo - Catania rail link in Sicily, Itlay.
The state rail operator has awarded 75% of the project value to Webuild, while the remaining portion goes to Ghella. The project entails the construction of 20 km of twin-bore tunnels, 7 km of roads, and 2km of viaducts along the Fiumetorto-Lercara Junction route. Additionally, a new station will be built at Valle del Torto, and upgrades will be made to the Cerda and Lercara stations. The construction process will incorporate rainwater capture systems, which will also be installed in the completed stations. Once completed, the Palermo-Catania railway will shorten travel time from 3 hours to 2. The journey between Messina and Catania will be reduced from 75 minutes to 45.
The project's infrastructure upgrade marks the initial phase in establishing a freight train network on the island. The new railway holds strategic importance for both Sicily and Italy, eventually integrating into the Trans-European Transport Network's Scandinavian-Mediterranean Corridor. The Caltanissetta to Catania section is projected to be operational by 2026, while the complete Palermo-Catania-Messina railway is anticipated to be operational by 2030.