Train appeared on the horizon

The train appeared on the horizon: Since 1943, 23 governments, 32 ministers have started the countdown in the aging Ankara-Istanbul high-speed train project; It is scheduled to open on October 29, 2014. So what are the features of this line, how are suburban connections established? Where it is scheduled new lines of Turkey? Why was the project that came to the agenda for the first time 71 years ago so late? Why did the AKP government not use the line passing through the Ayaş Tunnel, where 100 millions of liras were invested?

The high-speed train, which will reduce the trip between Ankara and Istanbul to three hours, is on its ears. The train, which has been used for about five years between Ankara and Eskişehir, is planned to be raised to the date of 29 October 2014. Trial trials have already begun. As such, the questions also multiplied. There is much to wonder about the characteristics of the high-speed train line, suburban connections, new lines, how the different governments changed from the start of the project, and the reasons for delay.

Last stop Pendik

First the most curious mistake; Let's look at the features of the high speed train (YHT) between Ankara and Istanbul. High-speed trains departing from Ankara will reach Pendik in three hours. Pendik will be the last stop after passing nine stops created between the two cities on the 533-kilometer route. The train will reach the last stop by passing Polatlı, Eskişehir, Bozüyük, Bilecik, Pamukova, Sapanca, Izmit and Gebze, respectively. Then by the suburban line in Pendik Kadıköy- It will be integrated from Ayrılıkçeşme to Marmaray. A passenger passing to Sirkeci in this way, and from there via the suburban line HalkalıUntil you can go without any traffic. Thus, uninterrupted transportation will be provided from Europe to Asia. With Gebze Halkalı There will be 42 stations in total, three of which are deep stations (Üsküdar, Sirkeci and Yenikapı). The approximately 76.5-kilometer track will be covered in 105 minutes. Train operations had already started on 29 October 2013 in the Ayrılık Çeşmesi-Kazlıçeşme section over Marmaray; With interconnections, the entire line will be completed in 2015. In other words, those who have had problems with the removal of the suburban train on the Anatolian side have to wait another year.

71 annual dream

So-speed train in Turkey, as Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's frequent mention, laying the foundations of the project, opening a completely Is the AKP's project? Turkey is enough to browse the railroad history for the answer to the problem. Turkey's high-speed train adventure begins 71 years ago. In 1943, with the tunnel opened from Ayaş, it is planned to reduce the distance between Ankara and Istanbul to two and a half hours, and projects are prepared and studies are carried out for this. However, the Democratic Party, which came to power while these works are completed, does not initiate any kind of investment because the USA stipulates its aid. Moreover, our country's railway investments have been the focus of ideological debate for a long time. In the end, the start of the project was given by the Demirel government in 30, after about 1975 years. In 1976, Prime Minister Süleyman Demirel from one end and Necmettin Erbakan, the chairman of the ruling partner MSP at the other end, laid the foundations of the Ayaş Tunnel and therefore the high-speed train line. The National Front government of the time aims to realize the project, which the World Bank does not approve, with own resources. The project, which is planned to be completed in seven years, has been wearing down 23 governments and 32 ministers since then.

Military coup on the fast train

After the project started, the first obstacle was hit by the military coup in 1980. After the transition to civilian administration, Prime Minister Turgut Özal stopped the construction of the Ayaş Tunnel and did not allocate funds for the project on the grounds that "Railway is the business of communist countries". On top of that, instead of high-speed trains, highway construction is started between Ankara and Istanbul. The project is once again abandoned to its fate. After more than 10 years, studies are resuming and new studies need to be updated. The report prepared by the Japanese International Cooperation Agency, whose short name is JICA, compares the high level of rehabilitation of the existing line with the construction of the new speed line, including the Ayaş Tunnel, and states that the speed line with a maximum speed of 260 kilometers / hour and a travel time of two and a half hours will be appropriate. . Moreover, this project is more suitable than the rehabilitation of the existing line used financially. However, despite all these efforts, not a single nail is hammered in these years for the project. Although Demirel tried to claim his project again in 1991, it is not possible to complete the Ayaş Tunnel, which will bring the Ankara-Istanbul high-speed train to life.

Delete new project from the start

Years pass by discussing whether the Ayaş Tunnel is earthquake resistant. During the DSP-MHP-ANAP rule, MHP's Transport Minister Oktay Vural prefers the rehabilitation project tendered to the Alarko group instead of the Ayaş Tunnel. There are even rumors that the rehabilitation project was presented and approved to the then Prime Minister Bülent Ecevit like the Ayaş Tunnel. In 2003, the AKP comes to power in the tender phase. The tender is held during this government period. The consortium with three partners, consisting of one Japanese and two Turkish companies, won the tender. The Ayaş Tunnel project, which was buried with 628 million liras until that date, will be completed if another 100 million lira is allocated. Instead, the 'new' high-speed train (YHT) project in Ankara-Istanbul, which was allocated 2004 million liras from the budget in 300 and estimated to cost 1.6 billion dollars in total, is starting. The foundations are laid on May 9, 2004 and the construction of the new project is being started. The Ankara-Istanbul YHT line will be activated on 13 March 2009, with its route passing through Eskişehir. It is followed by Ankara-Konya lines on August 24, 2011 and Eskişehir-Konya on March 23, 2013. Now it is time for the Ankara-Istanbul line to end.

Aya rack? What is the situation in Bursa-Izmir?

According to TCDD officials, the Ayaş line is not shelved; it will just be slow to build. In fact, a certain amount of money will be allocated to the Ayaş route in each budget period (but no money has been allocated in recent years). According to what they say, "It is best to reach Istanbul via Ayaş, but Eskişehir route also has other functions." The Konya high-speed train, which has become operational, also benefits from this line. In the next period, Bursa and İzmir routes will be connected to the same artery. Until 2023 Konya, Antalya and Mersin line up uzayacak.tcdd officials, the year of the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Republic of Turkey 2023'ekad plan for the railways, which have made the case. Currently, the share of railways in freight transportation is 5 percent and in passenger transportation is 2 percent. It is aimed to increase these rates to 2023 percent in passenger transportation and 10 percent in freight transportation in 20. The money to be spent in this process is calculated as 44 billion dollars.


It was claimed that one billion dollars was spent for the Ayaş Tunnel project, which was not continued between Sincan and Ayaş. The calculations of the Ministry of Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communications show that the expenditure made is 628 million TL. According to the old plan, the construction of the tunnel, which is the most important part of the Ankara-Istanbul high-speed rail road, stopped after 8 thousand meters were excavated and 78 percent was completed. Because volatile floors were detected in the tunnel. The tunnel length, which was decided to be opened with the 'New Austrian Method', was increased from 7 thousand 830 meters to 10 thousand 460 meters. This change increased the cost by 446 percent compared to the initial amount of exploration. In fact, when the tunnel was completed, the remaining part would not cost so much. Because the most suitable route was here, as it can be seen on the map. However, now Ayaş Tunnel looks like an abandoned construction site. We see rusty signs, ateliers and hangars in ruins; The locomotives and wagons in the hangars are left to rot. Most of the rails are under the ground. The request of Ankara Metropolitan Municipality to use the tunnel as a cold storage was "Was this much money for storage?" makes you say.


The 'Accelerated Train Project' and the Pamukova accident, which resulted in the death of 2004 people in 41, are still alive in memories. "Is the driver of the train that has reached a speed of 132 kilometers guilty or the administration that gave speed start to the current line?" could not find a clear answer to the question. But this is what we know: In fact, the high-speed train project has survived some difficulties before. The year is 1952… TCDD management bought two motor trains from Germany. It increased its number to 1954 by 18. Trains purchased from MAN company consisted of three wagons. Of course, they were way behind current technology. They started to work on the Ankara-Istanbul line. The train accelerated to 140 kilometers at that time. Yes, you did not read it wrong, it speeded exactly 140 kilometers. At first everything went well. However, after two months, cracks were observed in the axles of the locomotives. The Germans were called immediately and the investigation began. In the meantime, it was observed that the rails were intact despite the cracks in the axles. After long research, the cause of the cracking was found. The locomotives weighed 15.5 tons. However, the weight was determined as 13.5 tons in the agreement with the Germans. The excess of 2 tons in between caused cracks due to the speed of 140 kilometers, bringing the passengers to the brink of disaster. When the situation was understood, Kamil Necati Bey, the head of the consolation committee that bought the trains, resigned immediately. Although there were no accidents, this honorable behavior of the president was accepted by the administration at the time. Then the axle weights of the trains were dropped and the speed was lowered. Let's get back to Pamukova accident. Although no radical change was made to the existing line, the trains were ordered to speed. Moreover, the weight of the locomotives used at that time was 13.5 tons, not 22 tons. There is a lot of difference between 'high speed train' and 'accelerated train', especially the routes, but this is how Prime Minister Erdoğan's first hand at the railways started. Then the Spanish shook hands and the start of the current high-speed train was given.


Project lengths:

Ankara-Istanbul (Pendik): 533 kilometers

Eskisehir-Istanbul (Pendik): 266 kilometers

1- Eskisehir-Inonu: 30 kilometers

2- Inonu-Kosekoy: 124 kilometers

(YHT + 36 kilometers conventional)

3- Köseköy-Gebze: 56 kilometers

(Done with IPA funds)

4- Gebze-Pendik: 20 kilometers

(Under Marmaray Project)

Productions made within the scope of the project:

Ankara-Eskisehir tunnel length (1 pieces): 470 meters

Ankara-Eskişehir viaduct length (4 pieces): 4 km

Eskişehir-Köseköy tunnel length (34 pieces): 58 mileage 988 meter

Eskişehir-Köseköy drop tunnel length (27 pieces): 37 mileage 844 meter

Total Viaduct length (22 pieces): 10 mileage 230 meter

Total number of overpasses: 13

Total number of underpasses: 50

Total number of culverts: 180


Railways have 560 locomotives, 179 electric and diesel series, and eight high-speed train sets. The number of passenger wagons is 997 and the number of freight wagons is 19. 690 percent of the signal line rate of 11 thousand kilometers in total and almost half of them have been renewed. Currently, there are 28 stations and stations, 410 thousand 3 level crossings on these lines. Renovation works of 555 stations have been completed. Let's get to TCDD's projection for 270: The length of the railways will increase to 2023 thousand 22 kilometers and 504 kilometers of this will be high-speed train lines. The number of freight wagons will increase to 6 thousand, the number of passenger wagons to 792 and the high-speed train set to 49. Thus, it will be ensured that most of the passenger transportation is carried out by high speed trains.

The goal is to enter the world's top 10

One of the government's goals for 2023 is to transport 488 million passengers a year by train, with 70 daily trips. Turkey's high-speed rail plans, Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communications Minister Lutfi Elvan, we asked to.

How much resources have been transferred to the railway sector to date?

During the 2003-2013 years, approximately 32.5 billion TL was transferred to the sector. As in the first years of the Republic, we are building an 172 kilometer railway line in a year with the construction of the railway.

YHT ring has been formed in Eskişehir - Ankara - Konya triangle. What has changed with this core line?

It is possible to separate the life in Ankara, Eskişehir and Konya, where the high-speed train started, and the transportation system of our country as before YHT and after YHT. The share of train transportation, which was 8 percent on the Ankara-Eskişehir line, rose to 72 percent. Travel time decreased significantly with combined transportation to Kütahya and Afyonkarahisar with YHT plus train connection and to Bursa with YHT plus bus connection. Travel rate also started to increase. While traveling in Europe coefficient of 200, a figure more diverse reasons for traveling with 20 YHT in Turkey. Previously, travel for tourism purposes was 15 percent, this rate increased to 30 percent. Since day trips are possible with YHT, you can benefit from business, education, etc. Daily commuting has started to be preferred instead of moving the house for reasons. This contributed to family unity and budgets. Again, with YHT, cultural, artistic and sports organizations, which are among the most important elements of urbanization, also increased. Especially our young people are exploring cities with YHTs. It became easier to reach the Mediterranean from Ankara; YHT plus train from Konya to Karaman and Ereğli, as well as YHT plus bus connection to Antalya and Alanya. The travel time between Konya and Eskişehir by bus, which was five, six hours, was reduced to two hours, and Bursa connection was also provided with this line. Studies show that YHTs make cities within a 300-kilometer radius into each other's suburbs.

2023 million passengers in 70 When finished, could you inform us about the number of passengers planned to be transported on the YHT lines?

With the implementation of the Ankara - İstanbul, Ankara - İzmir, Ankara - Sivas and Bilecik - Bursa projects, our 46 provinces with a total population of 36 million, that is, 15 percent of the country's population, will be connected by high speed train. Annual YHT passenger numbers targeted in 2023; 17.7 million between Ankara and Istanbul, 4 million between Konya and Istanbul, 1.8 million between Sivas-Ankara, 2.6 million on the Sivas-Istanbul line, 3 million on the Bursa-Ankara line, 3.5 million on the Bursa-Istanbul line, 6 million between Ankara and Izmir. When the other planned lines are completed, the 2023 YHT passenger projection will be 488 million passengers annually with 70 flights per day.

Are trains run on high-speed rail lines?

High-speed train operation 250 requires infrastructure and train sets suitable for kilometers / hours. The 12 high-speed train set has been provided for the evaluation of the high-speed train lines opened to date. In addition, one of the seven sets of speeds of 300 per hour were taken, and six of them were under construction.

When taken into operation high-speed and high-speed rail lines continue to build, how a table in the transportation system in Turkey will emerge?

Train has become not only a popular but also preferred means of transportation. Our core YHT line extends from the west to the east of the country, from the north to the south. The next stops of the high-speed train will be Sivas, Bursa and Izmir. The construction of these lines continues. Likewise, YHTs will reach Erzincan in the east, and Gaziantep and Şanlıurfa via Konya - Karaman - Mersin - Adana - Osmaniye in the south. In summary, until 2023; Achieving a total rail length of 3 thousand kilometers by building 500 thousand kilometers of railway, including 8 thousand 500 kilometers of high-speed railway, 13 thousand 25 kilometers of high-speed railway and one thousand kilometers of conventional railway; renewal of all lines, completion of modernization; We aim to realize the national train project and increase the share of rail transport to 10 percent in passenger and 15 percent in cargo. Our aim is to be among the top 10 countries in the world in the railway sector.



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