Publié le 13/05/2015 - Mis à jour le 06/07/2017
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LGV South Europe-Atlantic high-speed railway line

The LGV South Europe-Atlantic high-speed railway line (LGV SEA) is an integral part of the European high-speed network. It will make daily travel easier between Tours and Bordeaux, and will spur the growth of railway freight transport in this area. This project has been in progress since 1995 in consuLGVltation with local stakeholders, with particular attention devoted to the protection of biodiversity. The line is scheduled to be commissioned in mid-2017.



pPreliminary, public and pre-project studies


Archaeology diagnosis performed by INRAP (National Institute of Preventive Archaeology Research)


Preparatory, levelling and civil engineer works


Railway equipment works and conducting of tests


Training of drivers followed by the commissioning of the line

Three major challenges – improving regional mobility, developing railway freight transport and building the high-speed European network

The LGV South Europe-Atlantic high-speed railway line (LGV SEA) between Tours and Bordeaux includes 302 km of new track and about 40 km of connections to existing lines. This major railway project has several aims. The main objective is to free up travel capacity on the existing lines in order to:

  • provide a more sustainable alternative to road and air freight transport
  • create additional travel capacity for TER regional express trains
  • develop multimodality in urban areas (using several modes of transport during a single travel) between a train and a tram or bus, etc.

This new line will also complete the construction of the high-speed Trans-European railway network by connecting the lines in the north of Europe to those which belong to GPSO (Large South West Railway Project).

More generally, this new infrastructure will increase the economic and tourist attractiveness of the areas through which it passes.

Key figures

  • 10,000 new jobs created every year on the project worksites for a period of 5 years (10% of working time dedicated to social integration)
  • 3.6 to 5 million additional passengers expected each year on the TV high-speed trains
  • + 20% per year for railway freight transport
  • 1 hour time gain approximately for a trip from Paris to Bordeaux


Découvrez les mesures de réduction d'impacts pour préserver au mieux les espèces menacées telles que l'outarde canepetière, l'oedicnème criad, le busard cendré.

Commitment to the environment – protecting local animal and plant life

SNCF Réseau (known as RFF before 2015) adopted various measures for the LGV SEA project, such as:

  • an ambitious forest renewal programme (1,200 ha replanted for 700 ha cleared trees)
  • different actions dedicated to the protection of biodiversity, e.g. ecological management of the Chaunay wet bocage, studies and protection measures for two endangered species

Consultation process – meeting the public to debate the project

LISEA, the concession-holder (tasked by SNCF Réseau to design, build, maintain, operate and partially finance the line) has implemented a consultation process for the LGV South Europe-Atlantic line. To this end, several public meetings have been planned, following the request of elected officials of the towns through which the new line will pass. SNCF Réseau has been involved in the case of towns impacted by connections between the new and existing lines. The purpose of these meetings is to reconcile individual interests with the general public interest.

Project partners

The studies related to the LGV South Europe-Atlantic line have been co-financed by the French state, regional government, European Union and RFF. As part of the concession agreement, which was signed with LISEA for a duration of 50 years, infrastructure construction will be financed as follows:

  • 50% by the French State and local government
  • 50% by the concession-holder and SNCF Réseau