Cuvillier announces phased approach to new Paris-Normandy line

French Transport Minister Frédéric Cuvillier has shown fresh support for the construction of a new rail line between Paris and Normandy.

Responding to a study published earlier, Cuvillier said the project would be carried out in two phases, with RFF first tasked with studying three ‘priority’ areas of the future route; Paris-Mantes, Mantes-Evreux and a new crossing over the Seine around Rouen.

Cuvillier said the current line was “saturated” and suffers from “chronic” delays.

RFF has been discussing options for a new Paris-Normandy line for several years. After presenting several potential route options, it announced in 2012 that it planned to move forward with designs for a new route connecting Paris and Mantes with Le Havre and Caen.

Cuvillier’s announcement echos recommendations made by the Mobility 21 Commission of splitting the project into two phases, prioritising work on the Paris-Evreux section.

Earlier estimates by RFF put the cost of phase one at just over €5.6 billion. The entire project is expected to cost around €8 billion and has been given an initial completion date of 2030.