Testing of the first line of the multibillion-riyal high-speed Haramain railway system will start in six months, according to local media.
The testing will take place on the line between Madinah and King Abdullah Economic City in Rabigh.
Khalid Al-Suwaiket, president of the Saudi Railways Organisation (SRO), said: “Work is going according to plan and the SRO has been monitoring progress with regular field trips. Results in the field are good, with 50% of the work completed in Makkah, 70% in Madinah, 57% in Rabigh and 50% in Jeddah.”
He said each station contains world-class facilities and passenger services such as departure lounges, mosques, helipads, platforms, car parks divided into long and short-term parking, VIP lounges, commercial stores, restaurants and coffee shops.
All stations have been connected with the public transport system through parking areas.
Six central stations are under construction, which would have special energy consumption metres. They would also have security measures in place including facilities for communication and long distance control and information transfer.
Al-Suwaiket said the second stage of the project is being undertaken by Al-Shoula Group, which is made up of two Saudi companies and 12 Spanish companies.
The project is aimed at providing safe and comfortable transport at 320km per hour. Construction started in March 2009. The railway is expected to carry three million passengers a year, including many Haj and Umrah pilgrims.