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Year of Rail: the Connecting Europe Express will run through 26 countries and 70 cities to show the connections and the way to go

Connecting Europe Express, a six-car train, will leave Lisbon on 2nd September and will arrive in Paris on 7th October after running through 26 countries and having stopped over in more than 70 cities. It is an initiative launched by the EU Commission to celebrate the European Year of Rail, to ideally connect the Portuguese, Slovenian and French presidencies of the EU Council and show “the power of rail in connecting people and businesses and the importance of the EU’s infrastructure policy in making contacts possible”. “The Connecting Europe Express will cover the routes that join us together, whether they are countries, businesses or people”, the Commissioner for Transport, Adina Vălean, explained. Despite wanting to show connections, though, the train will also show “that we still have a long way to go and a lot of work to do before rail becomes Europeans’ favourite transport option” and even before interoperability is a reality. In fact 3 trains will be actually running, because there are rails with three different types of gauges along the railway network. The cities in which the train will be stopping over will hold events and activities to shed light on the key role played by rail and the challenges it has to face to carry goods and passengers. The train will be in Italy between 6th and 8th September and will stop over in Turin, Milan, Genoa, Rome and Verona.

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