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Old December 24th, 2014, 12:14 PM   #481
Sunfuns
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Originally Posted by gippas View Post
A significant milestone was achieved last week as the tunnel of Othris was finally delivered in the center of Greece. The whole project consists of:

-A double rail tunnel of 6.4 km and a short double one of 630m a bit after its exit, plus another single one of 432m. The long one is the second longest rail tunnel in Greece
-A total of 5 rail bridges that all together have a length of 1.8 km

Now it remains for the tracks, signalling and electrification to be placed, which is part of another contracting. When finished, the line will allow speeds of up to 160 km/h with non tilting trains in a very mountainous terrain . More info in Greek at:
Nice video. The line with this tunnel is going from where to where?
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Old December 24th, 2014, 01:34 PM   #482
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You mean exact points which I don't know or general description? Those tunnels are part of double tracking and electrification of Thessaloniki - Athens corridor which in this mountainous section includes building of new alignment instead of present curvy line through summit. This project should be delivered much sooner but it was halted due to financial crisis, works were restarted a year ago. If I've written something wrong let someone with better local knowledge correct that.
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Old December 24th, 2014, 01:44 PM   #483
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Thanks, general information is enough. I wouldn't know small towns in central Greece anyway. Do you also know when it's estimated to be finished now? I now found elsewhere that the target is 3 h 30 min from Athens to Thessaloniki. If that happens will be quite competitive with other modes of transport.
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Old December 24th, 2014, 02:07 PM   #484
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According to April 2014 Railway Gazette International article Domokos - Tithorea section should be opened in the end of 2016. This is only remaining single track section on this corridor. Line from Thessaloniki to Domokos is already rebuild and electrified while section from Athens to Tithorea has rebuild tracks but still isn't electrified. For better orientation You may look at Buekkers maps here. I am not fully sure but electrification works weren’t tendered although masts and traction wire hangers are already at place so electrification works should be smooth. Problem is fact that modernisation of Larisa station in Athens is still at standstill so electric trains may have to terminate at SKA station instead. There is also a problem of insufficient electric locomotives and passenger cars as at present TrainOSE uses also long distance DMUs. This problem also wasn't solved and as financial crisis has still much impact on daily operations it is more likely that solving problem will take some time.
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Old December 24th, 2014, 02:25 PM   #485
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To add to Richard P's input, electrification of the Tithorea-Domokos part has already been tendered and the works are ongoing, together with some smaller civil works and the placement of the tracks and signalling. There is a rumour that one line will be delivered without electricity in advance by the end of 2015, to replace the mountain path. There are also separate on going civil works for the re-establishment of the Athens-Tithorea electrification, which was set-up quite a few years ago but is not functioning due to extensive looting.

There is supposedly a tender in the coming months to bring electrification to the network within Athens and do some works in the central station to make it more functional, though funds to finish it as originally intended were not found. If this happens, the Athens-Thessaloniki network, all through to the borders, will be fully electrified by the end of 2016.

Also, Trainose has a lot of electric locomotives sitting idle, the reason that DMUs are still used is because the network from Athens to Domokos (around the middle) is still not electrified.

Finally, 3:30 hours between Athens and Thessaloniki is more than possible, considering that some years ago before the new tunnels and full electrification there were express diesel trains that would do the stretch in 4:20. I think that there could be express trains to bring the time to 3 hours. However I doubt that Trainose will be brave enough to introduce express trains again, they'll probably stick to ICs and try to compete more on price.
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Old December 24th, 2014, 03:03 PM   #486
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Why would a particular bravery be required for introduction of express trains? Three hour train would take a large percentage of flight market including business passengers. I checked and there are around 10 flights a day or so. Express train could cut the need for flights in half and be profitable as well for whoever is running it.
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Old December 24th, 2014, 03:19 PM   #487
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Not so long ago someone on this thread made me giggle by asking when the line to the Piraeus container terminals would be scheduled for closure due to lack of funds and traffic (it hadn't even opened at that time), and here we now talking about all these developments and improvements. The news from Greece seems to be more positive these days.
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Old December 24th, 2014, 03:25 PM   #488
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard_P View Post
For better orientation You may look at Buekkers maps here.
Nice map. I didn't realise that the trunk route North of Thessalonki into the former Yugoslavia is single track. That surely must be the cause of some congestion.
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Old December 24th, 2014, 11:13 PM   #489
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TedStriker View Post
Nice map. I didn't realise that the trunk route North of Thessalonki into the former Yugoslavia is single track. That surely must be the cause of some congestion.
Why?

There is only one passenger train daily (and for some years there were no passenger trains at all, this service was only restored in spring 2014), and also freight traffic doesn't seem to be very intense. A few trains daily, maybe.
In terms of traffic, I think this isn't a trunk line, but a branch line. One track seems to be sufficient.
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Old December 24th, 2014, 11:26 PM   #490
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nachalnik View Post
In terms of traffic, I think this isn't a trunk line, but a branch line. One track seems to be sufficient.
Sorry I thought this is the main North-South route connecting Greece with the rest of Europe.
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Old December 25th, 2014, 02:20 AM   #491
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TedStriker View Post
Sorry I thought this is the main North-South route connecting Greece with the rest of Europe.
It IS indeed the main railway route from Greece to the rest of Europe.
But that doesn't automatically mean that it has significant amount of traffic...
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Old December 25th, 2014, 10:00 AM   #492
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunfuns View Post
Why would a particular bravery be required for introduction of express trains? Three hour train would take a large percentage of flight market including business passengers.
Trainose has some non technical challenges to overcome in order to have a succesful. A poor reputation in terms of reliability and quality, which means that it will take some time of on time service in clean trains before many people, especially business travelers, decide to switch from plane to train. A lack of advertising budget, which will not help the awareness of the service. Train stations without car parks, which puts off well-off users. A mandate not to lose any money and currently it is barely profitable despite many cut-backs in non profitable services and the subsidy it gets for non-profitable lines does not even cover their cost.

So, there is a decent amount of risk that for 1 or 2 years an Express between Athens and Thessaloniki will lose money and I doubt that Trainose will take it. They will most probably just stick to ICs, where they can achieve higher ridership by also serving the smaller cities in between the route, where the train will have a huge speed advantage vs coaches that currently own a good chunk of that market. This could change if Trainose becomes private but that's very unlikely, especially for the passenger services. The only possibility I see for an Express service to become a reality is if a private or a foreign public operator decides to enter the market.
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Old December 25th, 2014, 10:31 AM   #493
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nachalnik View Post
It IS indeed the main railway route from Greece to the rest of Europe. But that doesn't automatically mean that it has significant amount of traffic...
Okee dokee, I see. I had visions of a fairly regular passenger service and quite a few freights. My mistake.
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Old December 25th, 2014, 11:30 AM   #494
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gippas View Post
Trainose has some non technical challenges to overcome in order to have a succesful. A poor reputation in terms of reliability and quality, which means that it will take some time of on time service in clean trains before many people, especially business travelers, decide to switch from plane to train. A lack of advertising budget, which will not help the awareness of the service. Train stations without car parks, which puts off well-off users. A mandate not to lose any money and currently it is barely profitable despite many cut-backs in non profitable services and the subsidy it gets for non-profitable lines does not even cover their cost.

So, there is a decent amount of risk that for 1 or 2 years an Express between Athens and Thessaloniki will lose money and I doubt that Trainose will take it. They will most probably just stick to ICs, where they can achieve higher ridership by also serving the smaller cities in between the route, where the train will have a huge speed advantage vs coaches that currently own a good chunk of that market. This could change if Trainose becomes private but that's very unlikely, especially for the passenger services. The only possibility I see for an Express service to become a reality is if a private or a foreign public operator decides to enter the market.
That's too bad. Clearly it would take couple years to reach equilibrium usage, particularly from a situation you describe. The distance, travel time and population size on both ends is almost ideal for a profitable premium service. There should be enough capacity for both that and ordinary IC's. Hopefully happens some day… With some advertisement the service would be of interest for tourists as well.
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Old December 25th, 2014, 12:47 PM   #495
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TedStriker View Post
Nice map. I didn't realise that the trunk route North of Thessalonki into the former Yugoslavia is single track. That surely must be the cause of some congestion.
Maybe a look at former Yugoslavia chart will give an answer - here is chart for Macedonia and here for Serbia and this is "Corridor X". For comparison here is chart for Bulgaria which offers alternative route.
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Old December 26th, 2014, 02:30 AM   #496
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Thanks very much. I guess I've been too used to the railway system of Western Europe where twin-tracks are the norm along corridors of significance, with many routes being four-tracked.
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Old January 29th, 2015, 01:37 PM   #497
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http://www.patrasevents.gr/article/1...s-apo-ta-erga# about railway to Patra (in Greek)
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Old January 30th, 2015, 03:24 PM   #498
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From Rail Journal:

Quote:
http://www.railjournal.com/index.php...ml?channel=537

Greece to review rail privatisation
Friday, January 30, 2015



GREECE's newly-elected leftist government has announced it is to carry out a review into the country's rail privatisation programme, which is in its final stages

Energy and Environment minister Mr Panagiotis Lafazanis told Greek radio station Skai on January 28 that the government intends to reassess the planned sale of national train operating company Trainose and Hellenic Company for Rolling Stock Maintenance (Rosco)

...
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Old February 19th, 2015, 06:49 PM   #499
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Some fresh pictures from the construction works in the Xylokastro region for the new line between Athens and Patra

First, a shot of the exit of the Melissi tunnel, direction Patras. It's a 1.815 km long tunnel. There haven't been any works in that part for years, since the last constractor abandoned the project. The new one hasn't started this part yet.


In the city of Xylokastro though, the construction is moving forward at a good pace. In this photo, you can see the ground works. FYI, the train line is at the back, at the front it's the highway which is also being rebuilt and expanded.


A bit to the left of the previous picture, the construction company's building site can be seen and at the left edge the new Xylocastro station.


And finally, a panoramic view of the new station. Boring and functional, like most stations of the new line.
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Old February 21st, 2015, 12:36 PM   #500
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Thank you so much and give us more! I remember those views from August and I wondered then if something happens there. After that I've forgotten about this till today

And I wouldn't see the new station of Xylocastro as "boring and functional", 'cause I might give you a few examples that it's almost impressive
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