IRJ - June 2010 - (Page 27)
NTV gears up to launch
The launch of the world’s first private, open-access high-speed rail service is on schedule for next year in Italy. Despite the effects of the recession, NTV’s managing director Giuseppe Sciarrone is still confident that their new venture will be a success, as he told David Briginshaw in Rome.
TV’s new headquarters in Rome are located in a modern but modest building just a stone’s throw from the imposing but rambling headquarters of Italian Railways (FS) and its operating and infrastructure subsidiaries Trenitalia and RFI. Even though NTV has yet to carry a passenger, its presence has already ruffled feathers down the road at FS, spurring Trenitalia to relaunch its highspeed services (IRJ December 2009 p20). Even the threat of direct on-rail competition is having an impact. Mr Giuseppe Sciarrone, NTV’s managing director, is very careful not to give too much away in the run up to the launch next year lest his much larger rival steals his thunder. Information about the new service is deliberately being released in phases, with details such as the Giugarodesigned interiors of the trains, being kept a closely-guarded secret for now. Nevertheless, Sciarrone was able to provide me with a good progress report on this exciting project. I started by asking him whether the project is on schedule. “Yes, absolutely,” he replies emphatically. “We plan to launch the service on September 1 2011, or earlier if possible, between Milan, Rome and Naples. Each month we will step up the service because each month we will receive two more AGV trains from Alstom. The second step will be to introduce non-stop services between Milan and Rome, and a service from Rome to Venice. By mid-2012 we should be able to extend services to Turin.” The full service will comprise an hourly-interval operation on the core Rome - Florence - Bologna - Milan section. Alternate trains will be extended west from Milan to Turin and south from Rome to Naples, with extra trains running during peak periods. NTV also plans to run five trains a day between Rome and Venice. NTV has reluctantly decided to postpone introducing a service between Rome and Bari on the Adriatic coast
Giuseppe Sciarrone, managing director of NTV, with a model of the NTV AGV.
IRJ June 2010
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