TURKEY’s minister of transport and infrastructure, Mr Adil Karaismailoğlu, has announced that the high-speed line from Ankara to Sivas will enter service on April 28.

Trains will operate at up to 250km/h on the line, which will reduce the distance by rail between Ankara and Sivas from 603km to 405km. The journey time from Ankara to Sivas will be cut to 2 hours, and from Ankara to Yozgat to 1 hour.

As well as Yozgat, there are intermediate stations at Elmadağ, Kırıkkale, Yerköy, Sorgun, Akdağmadeni and Yıldızeli. The high-speed line will serve 1.4 million people living in the provinces of Kırıkkale, Yozgat and Sivas.

Civil engineering for the project that passes through difficult terrain has included the construction of 49 tunnels with a total length of 66km, the longest being a 5.12km tunnel at Akdağmadeni.

The high-speed line also has 49 viaducts with a total length of 27.2km. The longest viaduct at Çerikli-Kırıkkale is 2.22km long, while the highest at Elmadağ has piers which are 89m high.

Karaismailoğlu also said that the Ankara - Sivas project was the first time that domestically-produced rail had been used on a high-speed line in Turkey, with a total of 1676km of rail installed during tracklaying.

“The Ankara - Sivas high-speed line is one of the major projects that our nation is looking forward to,” said Karaismailoğlu. “It will be an important part of the east-west high-speed rail corridor stretching from Edirne to Kars.”

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