The contract to execute phase 2 of the Haramain High Speed Railway went into effect on 15 September 2012.
The division of the platform: Six areas and eight stretches
The route of the railway line, 450 kilometres long, was divided into six areas for phase 1. For phase 2, the same route was divided into eight working stretches to build the entire superstructure. As the Al Shoula Consortium received each stretch in the platform, work began to assemble the track and installations, and the construction of two stretches towards both sides of the track was undertaken from each workbase.
Construction on this phase of the Haramain Project began by laying down the track, in addition to the work associated with the workshops and workbases and maintenance bases, once the areas whose civil engineering had been completed in phase 1 were received. The work was carried out separately, or several jobs were combined in a succession of work on the tracks: cable ducts, HVPS, LVPS, signalling, catenary, telecommunications, etc.
With regard to the tracks, the detection of sand invasion and high temperatures in the early phases led to the decision to combine ballast and slab tracks (Rheda 2000 system), at a ratio of 75% and 25%, respectively. Likewise, continuously supported embedded tracks were used in the stations.
Altogether, the three companies building the track had seven quarries operating along the route, and six track material supply factories were installed in the middle of the desert with the goal of guaranteeing that the track would be built on time and with the quality needed at the construction site, and in order to have the materials needed near the corresponding stretches of the track. Two of them manufactured mono-block sleepers made of prestressed concrete, which reached production rates of 90,000 units per month.
Two track soldering plants were also set up to shape the long rails, one stationary and the other semi-movable to produce soldered rails 250 and 300 metres long (CWR Mobile Flash Butt Welding MFBW assembly system). The monthly output from both plants reached 450 rails between 250 and 300 metres long, equivalent to 60 kilometres of track. Finally, two prefabricated conduit plants were set up for the electrical wiring and railway signalling, which produced 60,000 metres per month.
Generally speaking, the entire Haramain Project and the end result show impressive figures: for the 450 kilometres in the line, more than 4 million tonnes of ballast and almost 1,000 kilometres of cable conduits were used; 1,500,000 sleepers were built; almost 2,000 kilometres of UIC 60 track were soldered and assembled; and almost 200 switches and crossings were supplied and assembled.