ASPI CELEBRATES THE OPENING OF THE NEW SECTION OF AUTOSOLE AND THE LARGEST THREE-LANE TUNNEL IN EUROPE
THE NEW SECTION BETWEEN BARBERINO DI MUGELLO AND FIRENZE NORD WIL BE ACCESSIBLE STARTING FROM TOMORROW
✓ With approximately EUR 1 billion investment, the project is part of ASPI's major investment plan. It will help streamline flows on the main transport hub between the north and the centre-south of Italy, reducing travel times by 30%.
✓ Giovannini (MIMS): "This work demonstrates the Italian high level of expertise in terms of design and construction skills."
✓ Tomasi (ASPI): "The new section is a strategic asset for the local road system and economy, and is at the forefront of engineering, construction, environment, and technology.
Barberino di Mugello, Friday 18 March 2022 - A strategic project was launched to improve the Italian road system and economy. This unique engineering, construction, and technology project that serves as a state-of-the-art laboratory in terms of technical and building skills anticipates the Country's new approach to significant infrastructural challenges.
Tomorrow afternoon, the new three-lane section of the A1 between Barberino di Mugello and Firenze Nord southbound will be open to traffic: a new route of 17.5 km, built as a natural continuation of the Variante di Valico.
The project was presented this morning in Barberino in the presence of the Minister for Infrastructure and Sustainable Mobility, Mr. Enrico Giovannini, the Chairman and the CEO of Autostrade per l'Italia, Mr. Giuliano Mari and Mr. Roberto Tomasi, the President of the Tuscany Region, Mr. Eugenio Giani, the President of the Emilia Romagna Region, Mr. Stefano Bonaccini, the mayor of the Metropolitan City of Florence, Mr. Dario Nardella, the mayor of Barberino di Mugello, Mr. Giampiero Mongatti, the mayor of Calenzano, Mr. Riccardo Prestini, and all the mayors of the area crossed by the motorway.
The new infrastructure enhances one of the Country's busiest junctions, increasing the capacity (from 4 lanes to 7 lanes) of the section, which on average sees more than 100 vehicles passing every minute during rush hour. The improved traffic flow will save the community 1.5 million hours a year and reduce travel time by 30%. The reduction in queues and stop-and-go traffic will also reduce CO2 emissions by 2,000 tonnes a year. An average of 500 men and women worked on the project every day for 6 million hours.
The new section features three 3.75-metre lanes distributed along with 17.5 km - 10 km of which are underground - plus an emergency lane on the open-air areas. The project is part of the broader development plan for the Tuscan node of the Autostrada del Sole, between the Barberino and Valdarno junctions, covering 120 km.
The project presented today, with a total investment of approximately EUR 1 billion, is characterised by four main infrastructures, two tunnels, and two viaducts: in this context, the Santa Lucia Tunnel stands out, the longest 3-lane tunnel built in Europe (approximately 7,750 m), equipped with advanced high-tech systems and excavated with the aid of the largest TBM milling machine ever used in Europe.
In addition to the two new infrastructure tubes, the project includes artificial access tunnels (to the north and south), the motorway platform (in the sections running outside the tunnels), the installation of technical cabins and ventilation, fire mitigation, and remote-control systems. The tunnels realised are provided with innovative safety equipment, featuring cutting-edge automated real-time traffic and emergency monitoring systems. These innovative technologies guarantee high safety standards and better traffic and critical events management. The Baccheraia Viaduct (135 m) and the Marinella Viaduct (550 m) were also built on the new route, as well as the Boscaccio Tunnel (2,000 m).
Supervised by the Ministry of Infrastructure and Sustainable Mobility, the project also provides a highly sustainable approach that combines the construction of a major work with the protection of the surrounding territory and environment. An example can be found in the construction plans of Bellosguardo service area (in collaboration with ARPAT and CNR – National Research Centre), included as part of the upgrading project. This project envisages the re-use of materials extracted during tunnel excavation (about 4 million cubic metres), also covering part of the construction requirements of other significant projects in Tuscany, such as the A11 motorway project.
Work on the new route was carried out by teams from Pavimental, the construction company of the Group. The new A1 between Barberino di Mugello and Firenze Nord is part of the Group's major Transformation Plan, which commits EUR 21.5 billion of investment in new works and modernisation until 2038: in Tuscany, the next phase will start with the works to reconfigure the existing carriageways of the A1 in the section between Barberino and Firenze Nord, intended for the exclusive use of northbound traffic, with a total of four lanes.
"This work demonstrates the Italian high level of expertise in terms of design and construction skills and is a guarantee to achieve the significant investment programmes on roads and motorways planned for the next few years," affirmed Mr. Enrico Giovannini, Minister for Infrastructure and Sustainable Mobility. He added: "In addition to the execution of works of strategic interest for Italy, which have been awaited for years, the investment programmes defined through careful planning, also achieved thanks to the dialogue with the Regions and local authorities, will improve mobility in all areas of the Country, including inland areas. The implementation of measures linked to the NRRP will also allow the introduction of technological and material innovations that will improve the quality and environmental sustainability of the infrastructure.
"Today is an important day for the country," stated Mr. Roberto Tomasi, CEO of Autostrade per l'Italia. He continued: "The new Barberino-Firenze Nord section of the A1 is a strategic asset for the local road system and economy. Above all, it is a cutting-edge engineering and construction, environmental and technological project. It is a replicable model in a context in which the Country is facing the great challenges of a future that is already present. Our commitment to delivering to the Country safe, modern infrastructures that meet the needs of citizens, from now until the next few years, has moved in parallel with a radical change right at the core of our company. In addition to the EUR 21.5 billion intended for the modernisation of infrastructures and the grounding of new major works, we have given value to the Group by acting in all sectors: from organisation to intervention models, from the monitoring system for works to new technologies in the name of cooperation with leading universities. What we are showing today is also, in some ways, the symbol of this profound transformation, mirroring a Group that is ready to support a change that is already underway in the sphere of mobility. This accomplishment would not have been possible without the thousands of men and women who worked with dedication and expertise to realise it. Thanks to all of you".