Train transportation in Italy
The Italian rail transport network is massive, updated and very technically advanced. It is particularly intense in the north with the country having about 16, 862 km of which 70% is electrified. The country runs about 4, 937 locomotives. This makes the Italian rail system the 12th largest in the world.
The rail system is operated by Ferrovie Dello Stato while the tracks and general rail infrastructure is operated by Rete Ferroviaria Italiana. There are also a few private commuter tracks. The state is the sole custodian of the high-speed rail transport that joins major cities.
The Rome-Florence high-speed railway is the oldest and most famous high-speed rail in Europe. It was half opened in 1977. The TAV was launched in 1991 to officially roll out the development of high-speed on major transport routes and saturated routes. This was majorly the Turin-Milan-Venice route and the Milan-Rome-Naples route. The most common high-speed train is the ETR-class with the Frecciarossa hitting the 400 km/h speeds.
Italian Rail Infrastructure The total length of all rail transport is about 24, 300 kilometres (15, 000 mi) and 2/3 of that are active lines. The country is a member of the International Union of Railways with the code number 83. The Italian railways are partially funded by the state to the tune of about €10 billion of subsidies annually.
The main stations are Roma Termini in Rome, Torino Porta Nuova in Turin, Napoli Centrale in Naples, Bologna Centrale in Bologna, Venetia Santa Lucia in Venice, Perlamo Centrale in Perlamo, Firenze Santa Maria in Florence, Genova Brignole in Genova, Pescara Centrale in Pescara, Trieste Centrale in Trieste and Bolzano Bozen in Bolazo.
Italy operates the main high-speed lines and works in major cities only. The Freciaroassa and Frecciagento, all operate on the high speed lines. Meanwhile Frecciabianca and Intercity operate on the main lines.
The Eurocity train operates on international main lines. Meanwhile Regionale Veloce, Regionale and Regio-express operate on regional lines. The Regionale operates in Trentino, Veneto, Friuli, Emilia and Apulia regions.
There are 31 companies that are certified to run railways in Italy. In 2000, there was Ferrovie Dello Stato S.p. A. and Trenitalia S.p. A.
From 2001, there was Metronapoli S.p. A., Ferrovie Nord Milano Esercizio S.p. A. and Rail Traction Company S.p. A. Four new companies were authorised in 2002. That was Del Fungo Giera Servizi Ferroviari S.p. A., Gruppo Torinese Trasporti S.p. A., (ex SATTI), SERFER Servizi Ferroviari S.r.l. as well as Hupac S.p. A.
In 2003, seven firms were added to the industry, five in 2004, seven in 2005, and 3 in 2006. Since then several more have joined the industry to put the number at about 56.