HAVANA Ė The railway line running from Havana to the eastern city of Holguin will be reopened in the second half of this year after being closed since 2006, Cuban state media reported Monday.
The project is part of a $3 billion program aimed at upgrading the islandís railroads, the official Granma newspaper said.
The train plying the Havana-Holguin route will have the capacity to carry 720 travelers using 12 railway cars imported from China.
Work on the project is underway and the terminal in Holguin, a city located 770 kilometers (478 miles) east of Havana, is being expanded.
Initially, train service will be provided every three days, with stops in Jaruco, Matanzas, Colon, Santa Clara, Guayos, Ciego de Avila, Camaguey, Las Tunas and Cacocum, railway marketing officer Ada Iris Quevedo said.
In December 2018, a legislative committee released a report on the state of railroad passenger service on the island, noting deteriorated infrastructure, including tracks, bridges and crossings, as well as limited availability of locomotives, freight cars and passenger cars.
Cubaís railway system consists of 8,194 kilometers (5,091 miles) of track, 1,839 bridges, 4,567 crossings and 252 stations, Transportation Ministry figures show.
The system employs more than 21,000 workers, who operate over 500 locomotives, 13,468 freight cars and more than 230 passenger cars.
The railway modernization program will also provide service to the eastern destinations of Guantanamo and Granma, with the same frequency as Holguin, and Santiago de Cuba, on alternate days.
The plan calls for upgrading the islandís main railway lines in a joint project with Russia, with officials planning to invest $1.12 between now and 2030.