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Railway: Lyon – Torino “a priority”, say France and Italy

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Construction of the new railway between Lyon and Torino via a base tunnel under Mont Cenis is ‘a priority’ for France and Italy, the two governments stressed on March 8 as they held a summit in Venezia.

During the summit, Italian Minister of Infrastructure & Transport Graziano Delrio and his French counterpart Alain Vidalies signed a protocol on sharing and indexing project costs, supplemental to the agreement to build the new line that had been signed on February 24 2015.

According to the ministers, the two governments are now working steadily to have the project agreements ratified by national parliaments and in force by the end of 2016. This would enable the project timescale agreed with the European Commission to be maintained.

Delrio and Vidalies also welcomed the inclusion in their respective national budgets of funding to maintain the service carrying lorry semi-trailers on Modalohr swing-tray wagons between France and Italy. Launched on an experimental basis between Aiton and Orbasano in 2003, this service is now to be established on a permanent footing. Within current funding limits, the ministers have agreed to support modifications to the terminals that would allow new services to be introduced.

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Partial undergrounding of Athens Metro Line 1 to be funded by NSRF

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Συρμός του ΗΣΑΠ στον Πειραιά

The project for the undergrounding of Athens Metro Line 1 section Faliro-Piraeus, as it seems, will proceed with funds from NSRF 2014-2020.

According to information of ypodomes.com, the project’s integration into the current programming period is almost secured and the project will be able to be implemented.

This means that, once it is included in NSRF, its maturation process will run simultaneously with the preparation of its tender documents, in order for the tender to be approved by the Managing Authority. The cost of the project is roughly 100m euros.

In relevant documents from the General Secretariat of Public Investments and NSRF as well as EPDM it is noted that it is a potentially eligible project by the Operational Program YMEPERAA, provided that a corresponding decision is also taken by the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport.

NSRF inclusion proceeds – The need for the project’s implementation

According to information available to ypodomes.com, at the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport, the matter is moving forward and the willingness to integrate the project into NSRF 2014-2020 and more specifically in the O.P. YMEPERAA is considered certain.

It should be reminded that the Municipality of Piraeus has put the undergrounding project very high in its agenda and pushed for its implementation as it believes that the project release enough space for the creation of an avenue that can tackle traffic, especially in the summer, to and from the port.

The project involves the undergrounding of the lines immediately after Faliro Station, the construction of a new underground station named Kaminia (at the intersection of Iroon Polytechniou and O. Skilitsi streets) and the elevation of the lines at Piraeus Station Terminal.

A project with long history

Here, we are talking about one of the most classic ‘mock-up’ projects. The discussion for the undergrounding of this section has been around since 2000 as a project combined with the Tram.

Eventually, due to the reactions the tramway changed its original design and was tendered as an independent project (and is expected to be delivered this summer).

After many years and many setbacks, the project has acquired approved environmental licensing which is considered to be a major advantage that could, in theory, lead to its implementation soon, soon, upon its integration to NSRF, satisfying a decades-long request of Piraeus to stop being ‘bisected’.

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SATE: Construction companies’ day-to-day operation, nearly impossible

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With the first support measures already in place since last week for the construction sector, there is an ongoing fight for their supplement as well as the improvement of the hard everyday routine in the construction sites.

With a new letter sent to the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport, SATE points out that there are still serious unsolved problems that affect the very survival of the sector’s businesses.

One of these is the transfer of staff to the construction sites (due to traffic restrictions), especially for ‘away’ projects. For example, it is know, that, as far as the islands are concerned, there is a travel ban for non-residents. The problem is even worse for ‘away’ projects given that hotels and tourist accommodation have now been closed.

Another major problem is the difficulty in the supply of raw materials, spare parts and imported machinery (even for pipes and cements) and additional types of safety and hygiene equipment (i.e. masks, molds, antiseptics) for which there is a serious shortage in the market.

Also at the construction site, SATE has identified technical difficulties in maintaining safety distances and meeting a maximum number of employees per site. It is also pointed out that there is also the human factor, namely the fear and unwillingness for workers to go to work.

Difficulties in the communication with public services

The country’s lock-down to tackle the spread of the coronavirus has created side-effects in the field of public projects. As stated in the letter of SATE, the employees of technical services work less than 50% due to various permits, fear of showing up, etc.

They also avoid not only construction site visits but also to accept visits from site engineers and contractors to their offices. The same is true for tax offices and the courts.

In this letter, SATE calls for the resolution of the above problems and the integration of contracting-construction companies into coronavirus-hit businesses.

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Four contracts for Patras-Pyrgos motorway project, dissolved

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Έργα οδοποιίας αυτοκινητοδρόμου

A decision by the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport dissolved 4 already signed contracts for Patras-Pyrgos motorway project, on Friday, March 27. The decisions were announced officially as they were  posted on DIAVGEIA Gov’t website.

The dissolved contracts concern the sections:

– Amaliada-Duneika (Contract No 2)

– Sayeika-Varda (Contract Not 5)

– Kato Achaia-Sayeika Contract No 6)

– VIPE-Kato Achaia (Contract No 7)

The decision was made on the basis of the Ministry’s choice to proceed with the construction of Patras-Pyrgos motorway by append the 75 km axis to the concession of Olympia Odos.

According to the above decision, Olympia Odos has agreed to take over the new section with an 80m-euro funding. At the same time, approval by the European Commission (DG Comp) is expected in order for the updating of the concession to proceed.

It is reminded that regarding the 8th contract, the contractor has also been overturned. The companies that have signed the contracts are: Papaioannou Bros (contracts No 7 and 5 along with Xanthakis), INTRAKAT (contract No 2) and GD Infrastrutture (Contracts No 6 and 8).

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