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Renfe sets a date for the new metric gauge trains in Cantabria and Asturias

Date: September 22, 2023 Time: 22:16:06

The president of Renfe, Raúl Blanco, has assured this Thursday in Santander that the new Cantabria trains will be operational from the end of 2025 but the improvements in the service, both in terms of frequencies and punctuality or breakdowns, will begin to be noticed in a test year Speaking to Europa Press on the occasion of his presence at the seminar ‘Towards a new international economic order’ at the Menéndez Pelayo International University (UIMP), Blanco stated that the new trains, with an investment of 231 million, maintain the planned schedule and the measurement of the units has already been carried out through the comparative method. Therefore, the manufacturer, CAF, already has “everything related to design and the future manufacturing process” underway.

The image, the ‘renders’, of these trains will be ready at the end of summer and they will go into production at the end of this year. “With which the planned schedule is met, investments are going at a good pace, both in the field of infrastructure and rolling stock and we continue to advance along these lines”, he highlighted. In line with the above, Blanco recalled that within the framework of the Cantabria Commuter Plan –derived from the agreements last year of the Minister of Transport, Raquel Sánchez, with the regional presidents of Cantabria and Asturias, Miguel Ángel Revilla and Adrián Barbón– materialized in the first quarter with an investment forecast in Cantabria of 1,262 million euros, both in infrastructure and for Renfe (rolling stock, stations, etc.).

Specifically, 262 million are an investment by Renfe –station and train– and practically all of them, 231 million, will go to the new trains, mostly for metric gauge, that is, the old Feve network. Blanco has assured that the million-dollar investment that is being undertaken in the region “is going to transform practically the entire infrastructure” with what will be gained in “convenience, comfort and reliability for the user.”

“And the same with the trains. The metric gauge fleet is going to be completely changed and the commuter fleet is going to be reinforced with five new trains, so that, as soon as they arrive, there will be a completely different network to the one that the users have had during these years”, he underlined. “That means new trains, new, probable new and transformed infrastructures, and it is what would give truly reliable frequencies, the ability to give the user a much more advanced public service,” she remarked.

A radical change in the situation of rail transport in Cantabria that the president of Renfe has stated will take place before 2026, that is, the entry into operation of all the new trains. “It will be progressive, as works are finished and trains are incorporated, but I believe that from the end of 2024, beginning of 2025, the effects must begin to be seen”, he pointed out, recalling that until then, the trains Cercanías will continue to be free in Cantabria and Asturias.

Blanco recalled that in Cantabria it had been “many years” since investment in suburban trains or metric gauge had been made, that it has a very old network –some dating from the beginning of the 20th century– with which it is necessary to adapt the infrastructure to the current level of safety and signaling, in addition to changing the rolling stock, which now includes trains that are over 40 years old. Some trains that “have more incidents due to the obsolescence of the material, but, in addition, make maintenance difficult because they are almost craft trains, in many cases.”

Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.

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