Palermo-Catania-Messina Main Line

The Palermo-Catania-Messina line (which is part of the Scandinavian-Mediterranean Core Corridor no. 5 (Helsinki-La Valletta) of the Trans European Networks-Transport (TEN-T)), falls into the category of strategic works envisaged by the Sblocca Italia (Unlocking Italy) decree.
The construction of the new Palermo-Catania-Messina link will lead to a significant increase in the competitiveness of rail passenger transport,  connecting the more densely inhabited cities to the interior and coastal areas of Sicily and the local services, ensuring efficient transport services for passengers and freight, thus saving time and money as well as significantly improving transport safety standards.
The new line will also create opportunities for relaunching the local economy, since the general improvement in the transport system is bound to have a stimulating effect on industry, tourism, the local community and cultural activities.

Main projects

Improvement of the Catania Hub
The project consists in the doubling of the existing single-track line between Catania Centrale and Acquicella, which will run underground for a total length of 5.6 Km, from km 236.473 to km 242.037 of the Messina-Siracusa line, running almost entirely in tunnels, including the construction of a new underground station at Catania and news stops (Porto/Duomo and Castello Ursino), and the refurbishment of the Acquicella stop.
The feasibility study was completed in October 2016.
Two-track expansion on the Bicocca-Catenanuova section
This project consists in the doubling of the line between the stations of Bicocca (included) and Catenanuova (excluded), alongside the existing single-track line and, in some stretches, by building a new double-track line. Furthermore, the project includes the drafting of a general redevelopment plan for the facility of Catania Bicocca, with the construction of two tracks for the Palermo-Catania line, a third track for operations and the maintenance of existing single-track section serving the line to Siracusa. The project provides for two successive construction macro-phases, to be carried out without interrupting the train services; the first phase will last about three years, including the commissioning of a single track, with speed-enhanced operations. The second phase includes the completion of the doubling of the tracks and provides for the commissioning – within the next two years – of the double track, according to the final layout, i.e. partially running alongside the existing line and partially on an alternative route.
In October 2015, as established in the project, the early workers were launched, which are currently approaching completion.
The negotiation activities regarding the entire section were started on 13 April 2017.
Two-track expansion on the Catenanuova-Raddusa section
The Final Design for the track doubling was completed in 2016.
The new line runs substantially on an alternative route, compared to the existing line, which will be decommissioned. Finally the project provides for the construction of the new station of Catenanuova, at km 187+366, with a platform length (module) of 350 m. Regarding this section, a strategic study was completed in May 2017 “Fiumetorto-Catenanuova section. Interoperable single-track (line) – first functional macrophase” with regard, precisely to the first so-called “functional macro-phase” of the scenario identified by the Commissioner.
In October 2015, as envisaged by the programme, the early works were started, which are currently approaching completion
In May 2017, the strategic study called “Fiumetorto-Catenanuova section. Interoperable single-track (line) – first functional macrophase” was completed, focusing on a new construction scenario, with regard to a fast rail link between Palermo and Catania, compared to the Feasibility Study prepared and produced in 2014, relating to the Fiumetorto-Catenanuova section. In particular, the first functional phase, featuring a single track, was examined.

Official website

Environmental Sustainability