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France: extending the Nice tramway system for enhanced mobility

Following the success of the first tramway line in Nice (which is used by nearly 100,000 passengers every day), residents and tourists will have access to two new interconnected tram lines in 2018 that will transform the city and its metropolitan area by linking the historic centre with busy hubs, including the seaport, airport, conference and exhibition hall, sports stadium (Allianz Arena), and shopping centres, and fast-growing districts, including Éco-Vallée. Since July 2016, a 100% VINCI consortium made up of Eurovia’s Nice division (lead contractor), Triverio (VINCI Construction France), and TP Spada has been active on the infrastructure portion of the tramway network extension project (Lines 2 and 3), while the ETF Grands Projets Transports Urbains Français (GPTUF) division handles the rail line portion of the project and the Caténaire division manages the overhead contact line portion. All of these work packages are being carried out for Métropole de Nice Côte d’Azur. Teams from Eurovia, Triverio, and TP Spada are building the platform and all infrastructure on both sides of the future track, and the GPTUF and Caténaire divisions are focusing, respectively, on the track and catenaries for the above-ground sections of the system as well as the Nikaïa maintenance centre. These activities are being carried out in a busy urban setting involving interfaces that are tricky to handle due to the many diversion works throughout the project site. The project, which calls for precise scheduling and task-sequencing, requires in-depth organisation and optimal communication both among the various companies working on the infrastructure and the specialised firms managing diversion works. In all, 22,000 hours (10,000 for the infrastructure work package and 12,000 for the rail work package) will be devoted to this major project. Project waste by-products will be sent by inland waterways to Eurovia’s site at Fos-sur-Mer, a collection and recycling facility that is unique in the region. Once the waste materials have been reprocessed, they can be reused on new projects, including the floodplain embankment at the port of Marseille. Work will be completed in December 2018. The new tram lines will change commuting patterns in Nice and enable passengers to travel from one part of the city to another in record time. Thanks to park-and-ride facilities, Lines 2 (11.3 km) and 3 (7.7 km) will provide a welcome alternative to cars. The new tram network will serve 260,000 people, or two-thirds of the population of Nice.
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