The upgrade includes the renewal of 34km of track, the installation of concrete sleepers, redesigning the track layout at Mortágua station to allow 750m-long trains to pass, improvement works at Mortágua station including widening and extending platforms and improving accessibility, and upgrading signalling, telecommunications, and electrification on the line, which connects Pampilhosa with Vilar Formoso on the Spanish border.

The contract also includes the rehabilitation and reinforcement of 10 tunnels and eight bridges, as well as the removal of level crossings.

The Mealhada Agreement involves the construction of a 3.2km electrified line north of Pampilhosa station between the Lisbon - Porto main line and the Beira Alta Line, along with the construction of a 1.2km viaduct. The tender also includes signalling and telecommunications.

The modernisation of the Beira Alta Line, which forms part of the TEN-T network and is part of Rail Freight Corridor 4, is expected to save more than 120 million tonnes of CO2 by 2046, increasing the number of trains operating on the line by 20% and the amount of freight transport by 26% per year.

The European Union is co-financing 85% of the tender price through the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) programme.

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