Sicily, tourist and cultural train will be born between Noto and Pachino

The Noto-Pachino railway line, which has been disused for 35 years, will be reactivated and will become a tourist and cultural route to discover the Val di Noto, Marzamemi, Pachino and other beautiful places in this area of Sicily.

In Sicily, the old railway line linking Noto and Pachino, built in the late 19th century and early 1930s and permanently closed in 1986, will reopen becoming a tourist and cultural itinerary with which to visit the Valley of Noto and splendid places such as Marzamemi, San Lorenzo Lo Vecchio, Vendicari, as well as, of course, the two terminus towns.

The rehabilitation of the approximately 27-kilometer section, which will be launched together with that of two other lines (the Agrigento Bassa-Porto Emedocle and the Alcantara-Randazzo), will be made possible thanks to resources for the implementation of Strategic Investment Plan interventions on cultural heritage sites, buildings and nature areas, as part of the National Plan for Complementary Investments to the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (PNRR). Among the twelve funded interventions is that of “Paths in History - Historic Trains and Cultural Routes,” which, in turn, is divided into several projects, many of which concern the area of historic railways with tourism value. Among the interventions receiving funding, for which a total sum of 62 million euros has been allocated, is the Noto-Pachino line.

A single-track section, which starts as a branch line from Noto station by deviating from the Syracuse-Ragusa line, it was formerly used for both passenger and freight service and, as mentioned, closed to the public in 1986 to be permanently decommissioned in 2002. However, to this day the line is still largely armored, although the stations along its route (Falconara Iblea, Noto Marina, Noto Bagni, Roveto-Bimmisca, San Lorenzo Lo Vecchio, Marzamemi and Pachino), while still existing, are all in a state of disrepair. The section also sees major engineering works, such as the 180-meter-long three-light bridge over the Tellaro River, and again the section that runs in a trench between Roveto and Vendicari, the 10-meter turntable at the Pachino station. Restoration and reclamation work on the areas necessary for the reopening of the railway line, which is being handled by the Ferrovie dello Stato Foundation, began a few days ago. The expected time frame for the reactivation of the line is three years.

Great satisfaction from the sections of Italia N ostra Val di Noto, Siracusa and Melilli, and the Regional Council of Italia Nostra Sicilia, which rejoice in having achieved an important goal: in fact, for years the associations have been fighting with petition collections, demonstrations, conferences and exhibitions, also with the involvement of the Faculty of Architecture of the University of Catania and the Faculty of Engineering of the University of Bergamo, for the restoration of the line. The restoration of the historic infrastructure will, according to Italia Nostra, help improve the environmental conditions of the area and start an eco-sustainable and, above all, participatory economic and tourism process with the productive and entrepreneurial categories.

And it is therefore on the basis of these perspectives that, collegially, Italia Nostra urges the Administrations of the Municipalities of Noto and Pachino to want to establish a “Permanent Observatory on the design and execution of the works of the Noto-Pachino railway section” for the duration of the design and execution of the works, in order to make citizens, economic operators, including the associationism that has done so much worked so hard for its recovery, to share the objectives and allow monitoring of positive actions in the area, in order to prevent / report any critical issues. A further call should be made to the Regional Authorities to accelerate their financial participation, which is considered essential to define the overall amounts of the project design.

Sicily, tourist and cultural train will be born between Noto and Pachino
Sicily, tourist and cultural train will be born between Noto and Pachino

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