Catania metropolitan line is currently characterised by a total lenght of 8,8km, with 11 operating stations from Nesima to Stesicoro. More in detail, it is the result of an ambitious project aimed at the substitution of the historical overground railway line.
This infrastructure has unique technological characteristics and represents one of the most interesting European urban interventions, being used by more than 3,400,000 passengers a year. Under the technical point of view, the system is characterised by three functional components: tunnel, stations and compensation shafts.
The tunnel, hosting two railway tracks, was designed providing a mix between conventional and mechanised excavation techniques.
The 11 stations were conceived referring, case by case, to both cavern and cut & cover layout. The best solution was adopted according to the specific set of boundary conditions.
Compensation shafts, finally, were sized to comply with both fire brigade and ventilation requirements. The geotechnical and structural analysis of these civil works were complicated by the presence of a really challenging geological formation, characterised by the interaction between the shallow lava stone layer and the underlying sedimentary clay bed.
In this exciting context, SWS was required to provide engineering services for tunnels, stations and compensation shafts, developing also highly specialist value engineering analysis.