Tuesday 5 August 2014
High Speed Rail / Middle-East

Ankara and Istanbul now connected to High Speed Line

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As already mentioned in the latest UIC eNews, Eskişehir – İstanbul Section of Ankara – Istanbul HSL was inaugurated by H.E. Mr. Recep T. Erdogan, Prime Minister of the Republic of Turkey, on 25 July 2014 with the ceremonies held in Eskişehir, Bilecik and Istanbul.

Stating that it was one of the most important times during his tenure that he would never forget, H.E. Mr. Erdogan underlined that Eskişehir-Istanbul HSL was constructed under some of the most difficult geographical conditions in Turkey. He also said

Turkey is going to construct 8500 km of rapid railway line, 3500 km HSL and 1000 km of conventional line by 2023.”

Expressing that Ankara-Istanbul HSL had a large number of engineering structures, Mr. Lütfi Elvan, Minister of Transport, stressed that it was one the dreams of the Turkish people and he was proud that it had came true.

Ankara – Istanbul HSL connects Ankara (population approx. 5.5 million) – the capital of Turkey, to Istanbul (population approx. 15 million.) – the most crowded city in Turkey.

In the near future, the line will be integrated with the Marmaray project, which includes the Marmaray Tunnel that connects the two continents (Asia & Europe) with a railroad under the Bosporus. After the integration of the HSL with the Marmaray Project, the travel time from Ankara to Istanbul will be three hours, down from the current three and a half hours.

As is known, the first section of the said HSL, namely Ankara – Eskişehir (population approx. 1 million) HS Line, was inaugurated in 2009 and the second HSL of Turkey between Ankara and Konya (population approx. 2 million) was inaugurated in 2011 with a commercial speed of 250 km/h. Together with the other cities (Bilecik, Sakarya, İzmit) on the HSL network, cities with a population of around 27 million are now interconnected with HS lines. Turkey is aiming to increase this figure to 40 million people by finishing the construction of the planned lines and the ones already under construction.

At the first stage, 12 return trips will be performed daily on the Ankara-Istanbul HSL.

Some figures:

  • Length of the Line: 511 km
  • Tunnels: 31 (40.829 m)
  • Longest Tunnel: 4.415 m
  • Viaducts: 27 (14.555 m)
  • Longest Viaduct: 2.333 m
  • Bridges: 52
  • Underpass & overpass: 212
  • Culverts: 620
  • Total structures: 942
  • Excavation: 40.299.000 m³

(Source: TCDD)

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