Madrid–Levante high-speed rail network

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Facade of Valencia North Station.

The Madrid–Levante high-speed network is a network of high-speed rail lines that connects Madrid with the Mediterranean coast of the Levante Region, specifically with Castilla-La Mancha, the Valencian Community and the Murcia Region autonomous communities.

The network extends from Madrid to the east, with branches ending in Castellón, Alicante, Elche, Murcia, Cartagena and continuing from Murcia to Almería.

When fully operational the Madrid–Levante network will total 955 km of high-speed rail capable of top speeds of 350 km/h in the majority of its segments.[1]


Madrid–Levante high-speed rail network
Fut. tunnel Atocha–Chamartin St.
0.0 Fut. Est. AV Atocha Station
0.0 Atocha Station
Bypass from/to Madrid–Barcelona
Los Gavilanes
PAET Valdemorro
Aranjuez–A. de San Juan line
Tajo river
El Regajal tunnel (2437 m)
A40 highway
PAET Villarrubia de Santiago
Aranjuez–Cuenca line
A40 highway
Aranjuez–Cuenca line
A3 highway
PAET Tarancón
Altomira mountain (768 m)
Ciguela river
Horcajada tunnel (3957 m)
PAET Horcajada
Cabrejas tunnel (2020 m)
195.1 Cuenca-F. Zóbel Station
De la Vega creek
Júcar river
Loma Carrascal tunnel (2198 m)
N320 road
Del Bosque tunnel (3128 m)
Motilla creek
PAET Monteagudo de las Salinas
Tendero tunnel (1097 m)
Bif. Motilla del Palancar
A3 highway
PAET Pozorrubielos de la Mancha
PAET Iniesta
Rodenillo gully (657 m)
Huertas de Mateo A.
La Peinería gully (387 m)
Minglanilla tunnel (520 m)
A3 Highway
Embalse de Contreras viaduct
Rabo de la Sartén tunnel
Del Istmo viaduct (830 m)
Villagordo Cabriel tunnel (3340 m)
PB Caudete de las Fuentes
Magro River
A3 highway
321.7 Albacete (Vialia)
Madrid–Cuenca–Valencia line
327.5 Requena-Utiel Station
La Cabrera tunnel (7252 m)
Buñol tunnel (1858 m)
A3 highway
Chiva tunnel (663 m)
Torrent tunnel (2290 m)
Classic line to Madrid (C-3 line)
397.6 Valencia Joaquín Sorolla Station
Classic line to Xàtiva
A7 highway
PAET Alginet
Júcar River
Classic line to Valencia
Upgraded track for 220 km/h
La Encina
Classic line to Alicante
Nudo de la Encina
Madrid–Alicante line
419.2 Sagunto
435.5 Villena Station
Barrancadas tunnel (2890 m)
Vinalopó river (1481 m)
Encina–Alicante line
A-31 highway
459.3 Castellón Central Station
Line to Barcelona
bifurcation Murcia
PAET Monforte del Cid
AP7 highway
Bif. Vinalopó
Temerosa (488 m)
El Murón (1730 m)
El Carrús (371 m)
Elche (1288 m)
482.2 Elche-Matola Station
485.9 Alicante Terminal Station
Alicante-Murcia Line
Bif. Torrellano, from Alicante
PAET San Isidro-Albatera-Catral
498.2 Callosa de Segura-Cox Station
Callosa de Segura (2020 m)
PAET Orihuela AV, from here single track
PAET Beniel AV
Variante del Reguerón modernized section for 220 km/h
524.6 Cartagena Terminal Station
529.8 Murcia del Carmen Station
A-7 highway

Madrid–Cuenca–Motilla del Palancar–Valencia[edit]

The first 28 km of this 391 km line are shared with the existing Madrid–Seville high-speed rail line. The section onwards to Valencia was inaugurated on 15 December 2010 and entered service on 19 December 2010.

Thirty trains run every day, fifteen in each direction. 22 are non-stop services and eight call at intermediate stations.

Non-stop trains between Madrid and Valencia cover the 391 km (243 mi) in 1 hour and 40 minutes, saving two hours on the previous service of Alaris trains on the classic line.[2]

The line is built to international gauge (1435mm), and electric powered at 25 kV AC, with signalling ERTMS levels 1 and 2.


This segment was inaugurated on 22 January 2018 and is a part of the Mediterranean Corridor. With this extension to Castellón a new AVE service Madrid-Castellón was introduced which cut the journey time between the two cities by further 30 minutes to total 2 hours and 25 minutes.

Four AVE trains per day are scheduled, two in each direction between Madrid and Castellón while this segment is also used by the Alvia service Gijón–Castellón.[3][4]


Segment under construction. Planned for mixed use (goods and passengers).[5]

Xàtiva–Nudo de La Encina[edit]

This 41.2 km segment is in service with a maximum speed of 220 km/h.

Motilla del Palancar–Albacete[edit]

A 62.8 km segment between Cuenca and Albacete provinces. This section was inaugurated on 15 December and open to the public on 19 December 2010.

Albacete–Nudo de La Encina–Monforte del Cid–Alicante[edit]

The 171.5 km section from Albacete to Alicante opened in June 2013.[6]

Monforte del Cid–Elche–Murcia–Cartagena[edit]

The under construction segment between the municipality of Monforte del Cid in Alicante and Murcia has a length of 61,7 kilometers, of which 46,2 are located in the province of Alicante and the remaining 15,5 in Murcia. It is a new segment of double track in standard gauge, suitable for speeds up to 350 km/h. The access section towards the new segment to Murcia is in service since 2008, although until the arrival of the AVE, it is only used by Iberian gauge trains. This section is 8,9 km long of which 7,7 km are ready with three track rails, two of standard gauge and one of Iberian gauge.


The main purpose of this line is to connect the Transversal Rail Line to the Madrid-Levante and Mediterranean Corridor rail lines. This segment is 184.3 km (108.1 km in Almería Province and 76.2 in Murcia Region).


AVE in Albacete Station


Madrid Atocha (Spanish: Estación de Madrid Atocha, also named Madrid Puerta de Atocha) is the largest railway station in Madrid. Atocha also hosts commuter trains (Cercanías), intercity and regional trains from the south, and AVE high-speed trains to Barcelona (Catalonia) and Seville (Andalusia).

These services are run by the national rail company, Renfe. The station is in the Atocha neighbourhood of the Arganzuela district.

Cuenca-Fernando Zóbel[edit]

This new station is 5 km from the city centre. It is named after painter Fernando Zóbel to commemorate his links to the city. The station occupies 3.950 m² with 8.900 m² of parking space.


This restored station is 23.000 m² with a commercial area and parking space for 600 cars.[7]


A new 600 m² station was built with parking space for at least 250 cars.[8] It brings the two small towns of Requena and Utiel on to the high-speed map./[2]

Valencia Central Station[edit]

A new Valencia Central Station will be built that eventually replaces the existing Valencia North Station. It will be 12 tracks wide in 2 subterranean levels.[9]


A 5,500 m² station planned for 2014. With parking space for 500 cars and 50 motorcycles.


The new intermodal Murcia del Carmen Station will be close to the present station. It will be 8 rail tracks wide and will serve buses and local trains. [10]


It is yet unclear whether the current train station, located next to the old town, will be the final station for high speed services or a new station will be built on the outskirts of the city. Construction of the high speed railway between Murcia and Cartagena is scheduled to begin in 2018.

See also[edit]

  • AVE Spanish high-speed train service
  • TGV French high-speed train service


  1. ^ "Líneas de alta velocidad, Línea Madrid - Castilla La Mancha - Comunidad Valenciana - Región de Murcia". ADIF. Retrieved 26 January 2018.
  2. ^ a b Fox, Brendan (December 2010). "New timetables in Europe". Modern Railways. London. pp. 74–77.
  3. ^ Pablo García (22 January 2018). "Una avería para en Sagunto el AVE Madrid-Castellón en su estreno con Rajoy a bordo". El Independiente.
  4. ^ JANDRO ROURES (17 January 2018). "Rajoy inaugurará el lunes el AVE Castellón-Madrid que empezará a circular el martes con 4 trenes diarios".
  5. ^ "Fed. castellano manchega de amigos del FFCC". Archived from the original on 2009-12-17. Retrieved 2010-12-20.
  6. ^ "High speed to Alacant from June 18". Railway Gazette International. Retrieved 11 June 2013.
  7. ^ Nueva estación Vialia de Albacete[permanent dead link]
  8. ^ Nueva estación de Requena-Utiel Archived 2007-10-12 at
  9. ^ Nueva estación Central de Valencia
  10. ^ "Murcia Alta Velocidad_Actuaciones Ferroviarias". Archived from the original on 2010-06-20. Retrieved 2010-12-20.

External links[edit]