Fez - Oujda railway line
Rabat - Redouane Mabchour
King Mohammed VI of Morocco formally launched the modernisation of the 354km Fez – Oujda line on June 19 during a royal visit to the city of Oujda in the northeast of the country.
The 900m dirhams ($105m) initial phase of the project involves the renewal of around 100km of track and the electrification of the 119km section between Fez and Taza, as well as upgrading structures for heavier trains.
The line is ultimately expected to carry traffic between Morocco and Algeria. On the Algerian side of the frontier a 130km line is currently under construction from Oued Tlelat to Tlemcen, and a second phase is planned which will extend the line to the Moroccan border near Oujda.
The project is expected to generate about 800,000 working days during the construction phase and more than 70 jobs during the operation phase.
Part of the 2010-2015 contract programme signed between the government and the National Railway Office (ONCF), the structuring projects involve the upgrading and electrification of the Fez-Oujda railway line and the construction of an exchange pole, the second phase of the mega project Oujda Urban Pole.
The first phase of the project was launched by the king in 2010. The project provides for the construction of a new-generation passenger terminal, which would accommodate an estimated traffic of 1.5 million passengers by 2020, in comparison to the 800,000 commuters it can currently handle.