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King of Spain opens new high-speed rail link

Source: The Associated Press - Sat 18th Dec 2010

king Juan Carlos today inaugurated Spain's latest high-speed rail service which links the cities of Madrid and Valencia.

The 12.4 billion Euro project connects the capital to country's third largest city and is due to complete the 352 kilometer journey in just 90 minutes - where previously a journey time of 3 Hours and 45 minutes was necessarry.

Over recent years Spain has invested heavily in its fast train network, which now connects the capital with seven other cities including Barcelona, Malaga and Valladolid along 1,599 kilometers of specially laid track.

Spain's high-speed train system began operating in 1992 between Madrid and Seville in the southwest. By 2015 Spain aims to have a total of 5,500 kilometers of high-speed tracks laid linking the country from northwestern La Coruna to southeastern Murcia and from Seville to northeastern Bilbao and San Sebastian.

Eventually the high-speed rail network is expected to connect Portugal to Spain and France.

An opening ceremony is to take place upon the train's arrival at Valencia's railway station.

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