Uruguay Launches New Rail Freight Corridor

April 19, 2024

 

Uruguay Launches New Rail Freight Corridor

Luis Lacalle, Uruguay’s president, has recently inaugurated the Ferrocarril Central de Uruguay – a new rail corridor primarily for freight, which connects Paso de los Toros, in central Uruguay, to the port of Montevideo.

The new railway spans 265 km and construction included the installation of 343 km of new track. While the railway is primarily aimed for cargo loads, it will also serve passenger trains through its 25 stations, 128 concrete bridges and 6 tunnels, two of which are over 4 km in length.

The first shipment of goods actually moved a fortnight ago, when a train carrying pulp made its way to the Uruguayan capital after a stop in Juanicó. This particular train will usually feature 26 rail cars and is expected to carry 4 million tonnes of pulp per year, although for the ‘test journey’ only half the cars were attached.

Uruguay’s Transport Minister – José Luis Falero – recently described the rail link as “a very important achievement for the country, an achievement that has been in the works for a long time”.

The project was launched in 2019 and at its height had 3,500 workers directly involved in the project, with 90% of them based locally. Construction used the latest railway technologies, such as track welding, anti-noise, and anti-vibration protection.

The Ferrocarril Central is expected to reduce travel times by 50% and the load capacity of trains will expand from 18 to 22 tons, providing a positive boost for the local agricultural forestry and the many other industries that will benefit from it.

 

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