A joint venture (JV) led by Italian firm Salini Impregilo has secured a €530m contract to build a 153km high-speed railway line section in Turkey.

The rail line section will form part of the new Orient Express between Turkish capital Istanbul and the border with Bulgaria.

Salini will lead the project with a 50.01% stake, while the remaining interest will be with Turkish builder Kolin İnşaat Turizm Sanayi ve Ticaret. The project works will be overseen by the Directorate General of Turkish State Railways.

The JV will build a double track connecting the Halkali station to Kapikule. Capable of supporting train movement at speeds up to 200km/h, it will replace the existing single track.

“Salini will lead the project with a 50.01% stake, while the remaining interest will be with Turkish builder Kolin İnşaat Turizm Sanayi ve Ticaret.”

The scope of the contract also includes electrification, signalling and other associated civil works on the high-speed railway line section.

Scheduled to be completed in four years, the project is supported by funding from the European Union through the European Investment Bank.

Once complete, the project is expected to reduce journey times, increase safety and support the development of the region.

It will also become part of the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T) and the Orient/East-Med Corridor that connects key regions in Central Europe with ports of the North, Baltic, Black and Mediterranean seas.

Salini Impregilo has been involved in the development of major railway projects across the world.

Recently, the company secured a €608.1m contract to build a section of a high-capacity rail line between Naples and Bari. This section will also become a part of the TEN-T.