Florence–Rome high-speed railway

The Florence–Rome high-speed railway line is a link in the Italian high-speed rail network. It is known as the ferrovia direttissima Firenze-Roma in Italian—meaning "most direct Florence–Rome railway" (abbreviated DD); this name reflects the naming of the Rome–Formia–Naples Direttissima opened in 1927 and the Bologna–Florence Direttissima opened in 1934. The line was the first high-speed line opened in Europe when more than half of it opened on 24 February 1977. It was completed on 26 May 1992, reducing the time of the fastest trains between the two cities to 1 hour and 20 minutes. The old line is referred to by Ferrovie dello Stato (the State Railways) as the Linea Lenta (meaning "slow line", abbreviated LL) to distinguish it from the parallel high-speed line.

In 2016 a contract was let for resignalling with ETCS level 2.[2] The line is part of Corridor 1 of the European Union's Trans-European high-speed rail network, which connects Berlin and Palermo.

Direttissima Firenze-Roma
ETR 500 on a viaduct near Arezzo
TypeHeavy rail
SystemItalian high-speed rail system
TerminiFirenze Santa Maria Novella railway station
Roma Termini railway station
Opened24 February 1977
completed on 26 May 1992
Operator(s)Rete Ferroviaria Italiana (RFI) (2001–present)
FS (1977–2001)
Line length254 km (158 mi)
Track gauge1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge
Electrification3 kV DC
Operating speed250 km/h (160 mph)


The 315 km railway between Rome and Florence developed from several different lines by several different companies for different purposes and as a result was curvy and slow. Over the years there had been many studies, proposals and projects for deviations to straighten the line but nothing came of them. After World War II it was finally decided to build a new line that was straighter, faster and especially shorter (237.5 km) than the old Florence-Rome line; it was also to be well-integrated with the existing line, rather than replace it. The project was approved and funded in late 1968 and early 1969. This was the first high-speed rail project—in the sense that "high-speed" is now used—to be commenced in Europe.

On 25 June 1970 work began on the most important element of the project: the 5,375 metre-long Paglia viaduct over the Paglia river, which is made up of 205 25 metre-long linear spans of and five 50 metre-long arched spans and is the longest viaduct in Europe. It was expected that the first 138 km section of the line from Roma Termini to Città della Pieve would take five years to complete, but it was not in fact opened until 24 February 1977. It was a milestone in the history of Italian railways, but progress was subsequently slowed by numerous obstacles, some of a political nature. The line had to be rerouted near Arezzo due to problems in driving a tunnel. The official opening took place with a train consisting of an FS Class E444 locomotive and Gran Comfort coaches.

The 51 km section of line between Città della Pieve and Arezzo was completed on 29 September 1985; the 20 km section between Valdarno and Florence was opened on 30 May 1986 and finally on 26 May 1992 the 44 km section between Arezzo and Valdarno was opened.


A1 TAV works
Direttissima from the A1 near Orte

The line has a largely straight path with a maximum slope of eight per thousand, no level crossings or intersections of any kind and the centre of tracks four metres apart to counteract the dynamic effects created by trains passing each other. Communication with drivers consists of an adaptation of the Italian RS4 Codici train protection system with in-cabin repetition of signals using nine codes and earth to train telephone communication. The minimum radius of curves is 3,000 meters, enabling an operating speed of 250 km/h. Connections between the two tracks in both directions every 16.2 kilometers allow trains to use either track in either direction or for all operations to operate on a single track if necessary.

The rails are laid using a UIC 60 kg/metre rail profile, with electrically welded rails attached to 2.30 metres-long prestressed reinforced concrete sleepers, spaced 60 cm apart with Pandrol clips. The interconnections between the high-speed lines and the old Florence–Bologna lines are implemented through lines that separate away from the opposing line and pass under or over both new lines rather than crossing over the opposing track on the level. The switches between the two running lines are capable of supporting speeds of up to 100 km/h, while the 15 switches to connecting lines support speeds of up to 160 km/h. The line is electrified at 3 kV DC, and supplied by substations at 16 km intervals. A contract was let to Ansaldo STS to replace the signalling and train protection system with ETCS level 2 in October 2016. It is proposed to raise the maximum speed from 250 km/h to 270 or 280 km/h.[2] It was proposed to re-electrify the line at 25 kV AC in the past but this has been abandoned.

See also



  1. ^ Atlante ferroviario s'Italia e Slovenia [Italian and Slovenian railway atlas)] (1 ed.). Schweers + Wall. 2010. pp. 52–3, 58–9, 64–5, 69, 145, 147. ISBN 978-3-89494-129-1.
  2. ^ a b "40 Years of the Direttissima". Today's Railways Europe (258): 36–9. June 2017.


  • Ascenzi, S. (1977). "La Roma Firenze tra cronaca e storia". Voci della rotaia (in Italian). Rome: Ferrovie dello Stato.
  • Hardmeier, W.; Schneider, A. (1989). Direttissima Bologna-Firenze-Roma (in Italian). Turin: Edizioni Locovision.
  • Pallotta, T.; Mosca, M. (2007). Dalla Direttissima all'alta velocità (in Italian). Ponte San Nicolò.
  • Tiberi., G. (1989). "Gli investimenti ferroviari: 150 anni di altalena". La tecnica professionale (in Italian). Rome: CIFI.
  • 122 km de Direttissima - pp. 6-14 + pp. 39-43 - 26 photo - vie du rail n°1584 - 13/03/1977
Arezzo railway station

Arezzo railway station serves the city of Arezzo in Tuscany, Italy. This station is the most important in all the province.

Economy of Italy

The economy of Italy is the 3rd-largest national economy in the eurozone, the 8th-largest by nominal GDP in the world, and the 12th-largest by GDP (PPP). Italy has a major advanced economy, and is a founding member of the European Union, the Eurozone, the OECD, the G7 and the G20. Italy is the eighth largest exporter in the world with $514 billion exported in 2016. Its closest trade ties are with the other countries of the European Union, with whom it conducts about 59% of its total trade. The largest trading partners, in order of market share, are Germany (12.6%), France (11.1%), the United States (6.8%), Switzerland (5.7%), the United Kingdom (4.7%), and Spain (4.4%).In the post-war period, Italy was transformed from an agricultural based economy which had been severely affected by the consequences of the World Wars, into one of the world's most advanced nations, and a leading country in world trade and exports. According to the Human Development Index, the country enjoys a very high standard of living, and has the world's 8th highest quality of life according to The Economist. Italy owns the world's third-largest gold reserve, and is the third net contributor to the budget of the European Union. Furthermore, the advanced country private wealth is one of the largest in the world.Italy is a large manufacturer (overall the second in EU behind Germany) and exporter of a significant variety of products including machinery, vehicles, pharmaceuticals, furniture, food, clothing, and robots. Italy has therefore a significant trade surplus. The country is also well known for its influential and innovative business economic sector, an industrious and competitive agricultural sector (Italy is the world's largest wine producer), and for its creative and high-quality automobile, naval, industrial, appliance and fashion design. Italy is the largest hub for luxury goods in Europe and the third luxury hub globally.Despite these important achievements, the country's economy today suffers from structural and non-structural problems. Annual growth rates have often been below the EU average with Italy being hit particularly hard by the late-2000s recession. Massive government spending from the 1980s onwards has produced a severe rise in public debt. In addition, Italian living standards have a considerable North–South divide: the average GDP per capita in Northern and Central Italy significantly exceeds the EU average, while some regions and provinces in Southern Italy are dramatically below. In recent years, Italy's GDP per capita growth slowly caught-up with the Eurozone average while its employment rate still lags behind; however, economists dispute the official figures because of the large number of informal jobs (estimated between 10% and 20% of the labour force) that lift the inactivity or unemployment rates.

Figline Valdarno railway station

The railway station of Figline Valdarno serves the Tuscan town of Figline Valdarno. The station situated on the Florence–Rome railway line, 40 km from Florence, on the stretch between Florence and Arezzo. It is mostly used by commuters coming from Figline Valdarno, Reggello and Pian di Scò going to Florence.

Figline Valdarno railway station is the seventeenth station (for number of passengers, architectural value of the station etc.) of Tuscany.The freight yard is no longer used and the buildings are let to members of the public or used for stocking equipment for line maintenance. The tracks of the freight yard are also used for keeping line maintenance machinery. The nearest freight yard still operating is San Giovanni Valdarno.

There are many monitors (two in the station, two for the platforms 2 and 3, one in the subway) displaying train departures and arrivals.

The station has two automatic ticket machines and two drink and snack dispensers. The ticket office is open from 6:20 am to 7:40 pm. The station also has a waiting room.

Firenze Santa Maria Novella railway station

Firenze Santa Maria Novella (in English Florence Santa Maria Novella) or Stazione di Santa Maria Novella (IATA: ZMS) is a terminus railway station in Florence, Italy. The station is used by 59 million people every year and is one of the busiest in Italy.It is at the northern end of the Florence–Rome high-speed railway line Direttissima, which was completed on 26 May 1992 and the southern end of the Bologna–Florence railway line, opened on 22 April 1934.

A new high speed line to Bologna opened on 13 December 2009. The station is also used by regional trains on lines connecting to: Pisa, Livorno (Leopolda railway); Lucca, Viareggio (Viareggio–Florence railway); Bologna (Bologna–Florence railway) and Faenza (Faentina railway).

High-speed rail in Europe

High-speed rail in Europe is emerging as an increasingly popular and efficient means of transport. The first high-speed rail lines in Europe, built in the 1980s and 1990s, improved travel times on intra-national corridors. Since then, several countries have built extensive high-speed networks, and there are now several cross-border high-speed rail links. Railway operators frequently run international services, and tracks are continuously being built and upgraded to international standards on the emerging European high-speed rail network.

In 2007, a consortium of European railway operators, Railteam, emerged to co-ordinate and boost cross-border high-speed rail travel. Developing a Trans-European high-speed rail network is a stated goal of the European Union, and most cross-border railway lines receive EU funding. Several countries — France, Spain, Italy, Germany, Austria, Sweden, Belgium, the Netherlands, Russia and the United Kingdom — are connected to a cross-border high-speed railway network.

More are expected to be connected in the coming years as Europe invests heavily in tunnels, bridges and other infrastructure and development projects across the continent, many of which are under construction now. Alstom was the first manufacturer to design and deliver a high speed train or HS-Train, which ended up in service with TGV in France.

Currently, there are a number of high-level manufacturers designing and building HSR in Europe, with criss-crossed alliances and partnerships, including Canadian company Bombardier, Alstom itself, the Spanish Talgo and the German Siemens.

List of high-speed railway lines

This article provides a list of operated high-speed rail networks, listed by country or region.

High-speed rail is public transport by rail at speeds of at least 200 km/h (120 mph) for upgraded track and 250 km/h (160 mph) or faster for new track.

Murazze di Vado train disaster

The Murazze di Vado train disaster was a railway accident which occurred on April 15, 1978, near Murazze di Vado, an area in the town of Vado, part of the Monzuno comune, Bologna. A passenger train was derailed close to a ravine, and seconds later a second train crashed into it.

With 42 killed and 76 injured, it is the fourth highest death toll in the history of the Italian railways, after the Balvano, Fiumarella and Voghera disasters. While the official count of the injured is 76, the actual number of injured is often said to be from 117 to more than 120.

Rieti railway station

Rieti railway station (Italian: Stazione di Rieti) serves the city and comune of Rieti, in the region of Lazio, central Italy. Opened in 1883, it is part of the Terni–Sulmona railway.

Timeline of Florence

The following is a timeline of the history of the city of Florence, Tuscany, Italy.

The earliest timeline of Florence, the Annales florentini, was created in the 12th century.

Route map

Firenze Rifredi
Firenze Santa Maria Novella
Firenze Statuto
from Faenza
Firenze Campo di Marte
Firenze Rovezzano
San Donato crossover
Arno River
Arno River
Valdarno North interconnection with the LL
Valdarno South interconnection with the LL
Arno River
Arezzo North interconnection with the LL
Arezzo South interconnection with the LL
Chiusi North junction
to Siena, Empoli
Montallese (disused)
Chiusi-Chianciano Terme
Chiusi South junction
Orvieto North interconnection with the LL
Orvieto South interconnection with the LL
Tiber River
Orte North interconnection with the LL
Orte South interconnection with the LL
Tiber River
Tiber River
Tiber River
Tiber River
Tiber River
Nuovo Salario
Aniene River
Roma Nomentana
Roma Tiburtina
Roma San Lorenzo depot
Roma Termini
Source: Italian railway atlas[1]
North America
South America


This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.