Rossio tunnel to open

STRUCTURAL RESTORATION work on the Rossio railway tunnel in Lisbon will be completed in December, the company has promised this week.

However, rail track company REFER says that it has yet to decide an official opening date for the project which has cost the company 28 million euros.

The tunnel, built in the 1880s, will have been closed for three years after dangerous cracks were discovered in its superstructure in October 2004.

The project was then held up after rows over delays and budgets with the consortium carrying out the work, Teixeira Duarte and Epos, whose contract was rescinded.

Ongoing litigation caused the entire restoration project to grind to a halt between October 2005 and January 2006.

Then, the construction engineers Tecnasol FGE were brought onto the job to complete the first phase of the project which is now being completed by the company Mota-Engil.

According to the Portuguese railway company, CP (Comboios de Portugal), reopening the tunnel will mean that 30,000 passengers currently having to alight in Lisbon at Sete Rios, Entre Campos and Campolide, will once again be able to use Rossio station which has also been completely revamped in the past 12 months.

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