Belgium cements ETCS frontrunner status with completion of new project
Belgian infrastructure manager Infrabel on Sunday completed the rollout of digital signalling ETCS on the 122-kilometre line between Liège and Namen, the company announces on Tuesday. The project pushes the overall rollout of trackside ETCS across the Belgian main network to 52 per cent, making it the European frontrunner.
During the work on the line between Liège and Namen, Infrabel installed 240 line signals, 1.300 beacons, 40 signal boxes and another 40 GSM-R antennas. The project took three years to complete.
As of March 13, 3.333 kilometres of lines are equipped with the European Train Control System (ETCS) out of a planned 6.399 kilometres. This year, Infrabel expects to rollout the technology across another 670 kilometres of track. In 2022, the infrastructure manager completed 740 kilometres. The current status means only neighbouring Luxemburg has a greater percentage of its network equipped with ETCS (100 per cent).
In Belgium, there has been a flurry of activity. Before the rollout of ETCS Level 2 on the Liège-Namen line, Infrabel in February equipped the 68 kilometres worth of tracks between Kortrijk, Ronse and Oudenaarde with ETCS. This project called for 85 line signals, among other infrastructure. In December, Infrabel was able to rollout ETCS on 58 kilometres of railway in a single night in Brussels. In late January, the infrastructure manager worked on the installation between. Liège and Leuven.
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