A New Railway Line “Haiya-Kassala-Algadaref-Sennar-Ed dmazin”

Prefeasibility Study for Construction Of A New Railway Line Parallel to the Line Haiya-Kassala-Algadaref-Sennar-Ed dmazin

Click here to see the project summary
  • Project cost = 1,454 – 2,018 m$
  • Total length (Main line + Stations) = 1104 km
  • Annual Net Benefits = 184.5 m SDG
  • Internal Rate of Return = 7%
  • Pay –back Period = 18 years
  • Economic Age = 80 Years
  • Execution Period = 5 Years
Project Idea & Objectives:

Haiya-Kassala -Algadaref-Sennar- Ed dmazin line is constructed mainly to be as alternate line to the main corridr Port Sudan/Khartoum to guarantee running of trains if any interruptions occurs in the main corridor and also to serve the transportation requirements in the rich region Kassala- EL Gedarif.

Gedaref city which lies amidst the line is characterized by its greater wealth in sorghum production. 65% of the total production in the country is produced in Gedaref region. Total cultivated area amounts to 2625000 feddans and average annual production total around 495000 tons.

Gedaref is also one of the major producers of sesame which is considered as one of the principal cash crops in Sudan. Area cultivated of sesame is estimated at 966000 feddans and average annual production around 75000 tons.

In the context of cooperation between the two sisterly and neighboring countries- Sudan and Ethiopia many projects have been launched to attain economic and social integration between the two countries.One of those projects is construction of a railway link which connects Sudan to the nearest city in the western border of Ethiopia. The project aims at enabling Ethiopia to transport all its exports and imports through Port Sudan on the red Sea .Distance wise Port Sudan is considered as the shortest outlet for Ethiopia to the outer world.

Total traffic which is envisaged to pass through the line from/to Ethiopia is estimated at 3 million tons per annum.
For all the above mentioned factors construction of the parallel line Haiya-Kassala -Algadaref-Sennar- Ed dmazin.

The line is considered as one of the top priority projects for SRC.
The line will serve also all the transportation requirements of the southern and western regions as well as Upper Nile State (South Sudan Republic) after its interconnection to the network from Damazin.

If SRC is able to attract in the first stage 50% of the abovementioned potential traffic the quantities envisaged will be as follows :

Local traffic = 500,000 tons ( 401 million ton-km)
Traffic from western Blue Nile state and South Sudan Republic = 800,000 tons ( 642 million ton-km ).
Transit traffic to and from Ethiopia = 1.5 million tons (813 million ton-km) .
Total = 2.8 million tons ( 1856 million ton-km).

Passenger Traffic:

A biweekly passenger trains can be operated between Kassala and Khartoum and between Kassala and Port Sudan. Total passengers who will be transported are estimated around 291,200 passenger ( 175 million passenger- km ) .

Project Description:

The project consists of construction of a new railway line parallel to the existing narrow gauge line Haiya-Kassala -Algadaref-Sennar- Ed dmazin. The length of the line is 1104kilometers .

The line will be constructed according to modern specifications which includes:


♦ Design standards: UIC, Chinese (GB), European (EN), AREMA, BSC.
♦ Track construction: Ballasted track with long welded rail.
♦ Track gauge: standard gauge 1435mm. In some routes (1067mm capable of subsequent modification to1435mm)Dual gauge
♦ Design train speed: (120) km/h future 160 km/h.
♦ Maximum gradient: 0.6% (recommended)
♦ Minimum curve radius: 1200m (and 800m in strict condition)
♦ Axle load: 25T
♦ Traction load: 3500T
♦ Effective length of arrival-departure track in stations: 750m
♦ Width of sub-grade surface: 7.5 at top of sub-ballast
♦ Thickness of sub-ballast and sub-grade: 600mm
♦ Embankment: depth of embankment under sub ballast varied.
♦ Ballast thickness below sleeper: 350mm for main line, 250mm for station and siding track.
♦ Rail: 60 kg/m rail (UIC 60)
♦ Sleepers: Pre-stressed concrete standard gauge (1435mm).IN some routes Pre-stressed concrete sleepers for Dual gauge
♦ Fastenings: Pandrol, Vossloh, or equivalent
♦ Turnouts: 1:12 and 1:9
♦ Subgrade & Ballast Cross Section
♦ Subgrade Slope 1:1.5 , 1.2 (According Soil Classifications )
♦ Ballast Slope ( 1: 1.5 or 1 : 1.75 ) Upper width of ballast 3.3mStandard structure gauge.


As the existing communications facilities impose heavy constraints and limitations on train operations and the railway’s performance , it is crucial that the whole telecommunications network be improved , whether or not the track and signalling systems are upgraded or renewed .

General features:

The future telecommunications system must be designed for:
• Short, medium and long distances.
• Multi – purpose applications:
1. Train security (signalling circuits).
2. Train operation (dispatching).
3. Freight and passenger transportation (commercial).
4. Railways administration (service and maintenance).
5. Railways management.

Technical features:

1. Back-bone: Optical fibre cables and SDH with STM-1 System.
2. Train –to – land: Wireless Radio 152 MHz or 400 MHz band, TETRA or equivalent.
3. Dispatching System: Via Fibre optics and radio.
A railway bridge across the Blue Nile at Sennar is recently constructed to guarantee a continuous and safe running of trains.

Project Cost & Financial Analysis::

Total cost of construction of the new line is estimated at 1,454 m$.
Net Benefits :
Expected benefits will be in the form of line usage fees which equals for both ton-km and passenger–km the following :

Ton – km = 0.09 SDG
Passenger – km = 0.1 SDG

In accordance the future benefits are estimated as follow :

Revenues from freight traffic =0.09 SDG× 1856 million ton- km = SDG 167 million

Revenues from Passenger – km =0.1 SDG×.175 million passenger-km
= SDG 17.5 million

Total Expected Annual revenues =SDG 167 million + SDG 17.5 million
= SDG 184.5 million


To evaluate financial viability and economic feasibility of the project the following criteria is applied:

1/ Pay-back period:
The project will recover its cost in a period which does not exceed 18 years including the construction period which takes about 5 years. Recovery period is considered very short if we put into consideration the long economic life of the project which reaches more than 80 years.

2/ Internal Rate of Return ( IRR ):
Internal rate of return of the project equals 7% . This rate is considered acceptable if we consider the project large cost .

3/ Social Impact:

Provide safe and comfortable ridership .
Stimulate economic growth and consequently improve peoples standard of living .
Strengthens and activates bitateral trade between Sudan and Ethiopia .

4/ Environmental Impact:

In comparison with road carriers the railways have the following advantages :

Saving of 10-15 times in used areas.
Savings of 3-5 times in fuel.
Cause 2 percent of the total accidents in comparison to 98 percent by roades.
Pollute environment 75% less than road carries.

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