Spanish Ministry puts ERTMS and signaling up for tender on Olmedo-Zamora

The Spanish Ministry of Public Works has announced today that it will put of for tendering the signalling and communications subsystem for the section Olmedo-Zamora High Speed Line – part of the High Speed Corridor between Madrid and Santiago. Minister Ana Pastor declared they will use a Public-Private Partnership (PPS) to undertake these works with the intention of awarding the signaling works over the next few months. The work should include at least ERTMS L1 and ERTMS L2, which would make the section suitable for speeds up to 350 km/h.

The announcement comes after the other superstructure elements such as track, traction power have already been finalised on the 95 km. stretch between Olmedo and Zamora. The government opts for the PPS construction because of lack of funds; the same reason why it did so on the other recent High Speed Lines that were tendered in Spain: Valladolid-Palencia-Leon and Sales Banos-Burgos.

The pressure to install the signalling system (including ERTMS) is on for the Ministry, because government sources claim they “would like to see the line open for commercial operation by early 2014” – part of the mater plan to have the entire 550 km. stretch between Madrid and Santiago on High Speed infrastructure by 2018.

The recent developments where it became apparent that Infrastructure Manager ADIF and operator RENFE had decided to temporarily switch off ERTMS on the Olmedo-Santiago stretch because of technical issues, may become a major influence in the tendering process, as well as ADIF’s response to install additional ASFA signalling balises to impose brake intervention on danger points.