High-speed train connecting Sevilla with Huelva is too expensive and ‘not worth it’, says Spain’s transport minister in huge blow for similar projects in Andalucia – including Cadiz

SPAIN’S high-speed rail network is the pride of many Spaniards, thanks to nearly 4,000 kilometres of track that connect dozens of cities across the Iberian peninsula, on trains that are fast, clean and comfortable. 

But despite the billions of euros that have been invested on the system since it was first inaugurated back in the 1990s, between Madrid and Sevilla, the network still doesn’t reach a series of significant Spanish provinces, many of which have long been crying out to be connected to the system. 

One of these areas is Cadiz, in the southwest of Spain, which was first promised a connection to the high-speed network from Sevilla back in the early 1990s. 

This promise, however, has never been made good, and Socialist Party Transport Minister Oscar Puente has just ruled out any such public works any time soon. 

Read more: Train travel costs to plummet in Spain: Ouigo will expand to Andalucia, Murcia and Valladolid with tickets from €9

Transport Minister Oscar Puente in a file photo.

“It would cost us a huge pile of money,” said Puente this week at an event organised by the Europa Press news agency, adding that it would ‘not be worth it’. 

He was talking about neighbouring Huelva, but the same issues can be applied to Cadiz too. 

“With a third of the investment, we can solve the problem much quicker,” he said, in reference to other ways that the train travel time could be reduced between Sevilla and Huelva. The difference between such a solution and the high-speed link would be just ‘ten minutes’, according to the minister. 

The problem when it comes to Cadiz, according to a report in the Diario de Cadiz, is that the train network in the province currently has to cope with rolling stock trains, commuter trains, mid- and long-distance trains, and even a metropolitan tram system. 

While the system counts on double tracks and can cope with both European and national gauge trains, to be able to cope with the high-speed AVE trains, an entirely new line would have to be constructed. 

Both provinces, then, will still have to wait some time before they have any chance of joining Spain’s beloved high-speed rail revolution. 

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