GPSO encompasses the construction of two high-speed lines totalling 420km from Bordeaux southeast to Toulouse and southwest to Dax, with a second phase from Dax to Hendaye on the Spanish border. The third element of GPSO involves improvements to the rail network to the south of Bordeaux and the north of Toulouse.
The public inquiries are expected to last between four and eight weeks and will pave the way for a declaration of public utility in 2015. Work on the projects is planned to start in 2017.
The €5.9bn Bordeaux – Toulouse line is expected to open in 2024, followed by the €3.2bn Bordeaux – Dax line in 2027.
Both lines will effectively be extensions to the existing Paris - Tours TGV Altantique and TGV Sud-Europ Atlantique currently under construction between Tours and Bordeaux. When these projects are completed journey times will fall from 5h 30min to 3h 25min from Paris to Toulouse and from 5h 8min to 3h 25min for Paris to Bayonne, which is 51km southwest of Dax.
- French Rail Network (RFF) has announced that earthworks and the majority of the civil works for the 182km Bretagne – Pays de la Loire high-speed line from Rennes to Le Mans have been completed allowing the installation of railway equipment – track, electrification and signalling – to start. The line is expected to open in 2017.