Backstage

Tangier – Casablanca High Speed Train: latest news

After signing of the agreement between Morocco and France on 22 October 2007 for the high speed line connecting Tangier to Casablanca, ONCF initiated a series of measures designed to start up this project.

 


External Communication:

To inform public opinion on details regarding this project, a press conference was held on the following subjects:
  • High speed trains in the work
  • Why high speed trains in Morocco
  • Master Plan for High-Speed in Morocco
  • First step of project. .

High-level preliminary contacts.

Several contacts occurred between the managers of ONCF and SNCF networks to establish the foundations of a partnership mobilizing the resources of the 2 parties to carry out this ambitious project.

Meetings between the experts of SNCF/ONCF:

Important meetings were held to define the conditions and practical modalities of the partnership.  Firstly, they dealt with the organizational structure of the project:

  • Operational flowchart and players
  • Master Plan for quality
  • Security
  • Sales offer
  • Training
  • Etc …

Continuation of studies:

For choosing the right location for building the future high-speed train stations (Casa Sud, etc.) ONCF is conducting identification studies en collaboration with the relevant cities and by using the expertise of specialized consultants.

ONCF, an active presence on the international and regional scene

Through its fundamental mastery over the railway product, ONCF strives to position itself as a front-running player in urban and regional transport by contributing its know—how and expertise to the population centers in need.

This is the case of greater Casablanca for which a study on public transport in specifically reserved site (TCSP) was conducted by the EGIS RAIL consultancy.

This study dealt with the definition of the transport offer and its coherence with the projected development and urban movement plan, the technical feasibility in terms of infrastructure and railway operation, the itinerary, the quadrupling of tracks, stations and exchange locations to be provided.

It concluded that there is a need to build an infrastructure dedicated thereto.

Of a length of nearly 63 Km, this service should extend to the city of Mohammedia and to Mohammed V Airport using the 4 tracks in the ONCF right of ways a part of the route of which would be underground between Casa Port and the future high-speed train station of TGV Casa Sud.

ONCF and active player in urban transport projects

  • Morocco was elected member of the Intergovernmental Organization for International Carriage by Rail (OTIF), for 2006-2010.

    In this Committee our country represents the Arabic speaking States of North Africa and the Near East.

  • ONCF is an active member of the International Union of Railways (IUR/UIC) for Africa.

    Further to action by the members of this institution, it contributes to the definition of a strategic vision of railway development on the African continent by 2025.



  • ONCF served as President of the Arab Union of Railways (AUR) for 2006 and 2007.

    During its mandate, ONCF launched important measures leading to a re-vitalization of the role of this institution in the development of railways in the Arab world.

  • At the level of the  Maghreb, the presidency of the Maghreb Railway Transport Committee (MRTC) was handed over to ONCF for 2008.

    An ambitious action plan has already been devised for this mandate, among other elements, comprising the establishment of new organizational structures, the implementation of a reliable program leading to major projects in the Maghreb (High-Speed train in Morocco, freight corridor, security and interoperability).

Control Center Rabat: Here is the vital center of ONCF!

  • Code name : CC (Control Center) usually called "Regulation"
  • Location : 5th floor of the building and home of the ONCF headquarters overlooking the rooftops of the Agdal district in Rabat.
  • Access : Forbidden entry zone of ONCF
  • Mission : To oversee general railway traffic.
At the control center the space is enormous, the environment pleasant and up-to-date. Here, the light never go out, some forty operator take turns round the clock and seven days a week to oversee traffic and guarantee smooth running.

Their eyes constantly monitor the computer screen showing the status of traffic in real time per geographical zone:  The lines from Marrakech to Settat and Safi to Benguérir (330 km), the lines from Casablanca to Sidi Aidi and Oued Zem to Jorf Lasfar (300 km), The line from Casablanca to Tangier (420 km) and the line from Sidi Kacem to Oujda (470 km).

Suddenly, intense activity begins, a breakdown is reported.  It causes late arrivals on all the remaining trains and even for trains running in the opposite direction.

A true problem. It's an engine failure. Someone is looking for replacement equipment and someone else a way to get it to the right place, the information is transmitted to all the stations on the line and then to the dispatchers on board other trains.

On the sport the station display panels announce the disturbance and call center (Krtary) broadcasts the information to travellers over the telephone and on the ONCF website.

Everything transpired in a few minutes thanks to the overall view of the network and coordination between operators and agents in the field.

A breakdown blocks the track in the station. It is decided to bypass the following trains so they can get around the hurdle.

Then, all of a sudden a voice is heard through a loudspeaker. It's the driver of the broken down train.  He was able to fix the train and was able to continue along the way.

nformation distributed, and cooperation having occurred between operators, the train is authorized to continue its journey and fresh measures are taken for the resumption of the normal situation.

One work team penetrates into the space and another leaves.  The objective is the same, i.e. maximum punctuality and security!