MOROCCO, HIGH-SPEED RAILWAY LINE 90% COMPLETED
On 28 August, the Moroccan Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport, Abdelkader Amara, said that the work on the Tangier – Casablanca high speed rail line has reached a state of progress of over 90%. This figure was confirmed at the last meeting of the Board of Directors of the Office national des chemins de fer (Ferrovie dello Stato), which foresees the delivery of the infrastructure by June 2018. The project altogether includes 12 tunnels, 169 Railway bridges and over one hundred hydraulic structures, 80% of which made by Moroccan companies. ONCF Chief Operating Officer Mohamed Rabie Khlie informed the media that the first tests of the TGV were carried out last February at a speed of 160 km / h, while 320 km / h tests will begin next September on a 120 kilometers stretch. DG Khlie confirmed that trainings for train maintenance personnel are also being carried out, in addition to the operators in charge of marketing the service. The first semester of 2018 will be dedicated to line and routing approval tests, while commercial start-up is scheduled for next summer. The TGV station in Tangier, for which an amount of about € 32 million has been allocated, will be built on an area of 10,500 m² (waiting rooms, ticket offices, boarding areas, shopping areas) and 77,000 m² of equipped outdoor areas. In Tangier, a convoy maintenance center was also set up, designed for 30 high-speed trains, covering an area of 14 hectares, of which 20,000 square meters of buildings. The TGV maintenance center, with the latest industry technology, costed around € 56 million and was made by a consortium of Moroccan companies, joint ventured with French Railways Société nationale des chemins de francais (SNCF).