Border Crossings: France - Spain

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Cerbère SNCF - Port-Bou RENFE

[E*] Lines of both gauges (1435 mm and 1668 mm) cross the border. Until February 2019, advertised passenger carrying trains normally ran only from France to Port-Bou, whilst those from Spain normally ran only to Cerbère, i.e. trains ran empty in the opposite directions. However, since February 2019, passengers have been permitted to travel on these trains in both directions.

Most freight trains change bogies at Cerbère. RENFE 3000 V dc trains operate at reduced power under 1500 V dc catenary in the border areas.

Perpignan SNCF - Figueres Vilafant RENFE

[E] This is part of a high speed line, built to standard gauge and electrified at 25KV 50Hz, linking Barcelona with the French LGV network.

Standard gauge freight trains are able to reach Barcelona by use of the high speed line between as far as Mollet del Vallès and thence a dual-gauge line into the industrial and port area to the west of Barcelona. RENFE operates freight at least as far north as Perpignan St Charles.

La Tour de Carol-Enveitg SNCF - Puigcerdà RENFE

[E*] Lines of both 1668 mm and 1435 mm gauge cross the border. The 1435 mm gauge track is unusable and probably originated from the principle of reciprocity, carrying little or no traffic during its lifetime.

Owing to modernisation work on the Toses tunnel, this line is bus substituted from 22 June until 7 February 2021.

(Oloron -) Forges-d'Abel SNCF - Canfranc RENFE

[ED] Line closed. The break of gauge was at Canfranc.

In December 2017 the EU agreed to co-fund a study into the reopening of this line. A meeting was held in Dec 2019 between the president of Nouvelle Aquitaine and officials from Aragón to move matters forward.

Hendaia ET/FV- Irun Paseo de Colon ET/FV

[E] Metre-gauge railway operated by Eusko Trenbideak/Ferrocarriles Vascos.

Hendaye SNCF - Irún/Irun RENFE

[E*] Although lines of both gauges (1435 mm and 1668 mm) cross the border, passenger carrying trains normally run only from France to Irún/Irun, whilst those from Spain normally run only to Hendaye, i.e. trains run empty in the opposite directions. However, from December 2017 the only cross-border passenger movements were in the direction Spain to France, by train numbers 280 and 310. For current services see route FR20/52. Most freight trains change bogies at Hendaye. RENFE 3000 V dc trains operate at reduced power under 1500 V dc catenary in the border areas.

Contracts have been awarded to install mixed-gauge track between Irún and Astigarraga (south of San Sebastián/Donostia), the end point of the 'Basque Y' high speed line, and upgrade signalling and the over head line.

See also