The great architectural project of Zaha Hadid becomes reality. Starting from 11th June 2017, the new Napoli Afragola station will receive 18 pairs of high speed trains every day that will link the new Naples stop with the main cities of the Turin – Salerno backbone, as well as going to Venice and Reggio Calabria.
And there is more. Napoli Afragola will link into connections from Napoli Centrale, because 32 trains out of 36 will stop in both stations, serving complementary – but different – user bases and areas. Only 55 minutes is needed to get to Roma Termini station, while the journey time between Napoli Centrale station and the Italian capital is unchanged (1h 10’).
The station thus becomes a strategic hub for the regional and national transport system. It is a splendid piece of work to be admired for its architectural beauty, and has capitalised on a decisive opportunity to redesign and repurpose the surrounding area.
Zaha Hadid’s project for the new Napoli Afragola station meets the engineering and architectural needs of FS Italiane. It embraces the concept of a station as being no longer a simple place where travellers move through, but a civic area where people can meet, surrounded the harmony of this structure.
The central body of the station is 400 metres long and crosses the tracks like a large bridge, with an area of 30,000 square metres, it is laid out over four levels. The investment in the tender process for this first phase is 60 million euros.
The project also includes an external area of around 150,000 square metres, featuring green areas, around 1,400 parking spaces (when complete), and 53 places for taxis and kiss&ride drop-offs that also have a reserved lane. Fifteen places are allocated for local and longer-distance buses.
This is a work of infrastructure which from 2022 will become a true intermodal hub, thanks to the links between long-distance and regional rail lines which are to be made shortly: the Naples-Cancello-Frasso Telesino line and the extension of the Circumvesuviana railway. When up and running, it is a transport hub that will serve an urban market of around three million people.
A thermal solar system has been included in the design to produce sanitary water and heating in the winter. There are also polyvalent air conditioners which in spring and autumn and at all times when external temperatures are not very high, will perform better than those which use traditional cooling systems.
The use of these two systems, as well as bringing unquestionable advantages in terms of energy use and the saving of numerous tonnes of CO² emissions, has also meant the elimination of the production of fluids from methane-burning boilers, reducing the environmental impact.
From Sunday 11th June to Tuesday 11th July 2017, the Afragola station in Naples hosted a free exhibition on some of the infrastructure projects made by Zaha Hadid Architects which have been recently opened or are on course for completion around the world.
In the exhibition area which was put together by the FS Italiane Group together with Zaha Hadid Architects, there were scale models, video animations and texts which gave visitors the chance to find out more about structures like the Nordpark station in Innsbruck, the new Beijing airport terminal, the metro station of the King Abdullah financial district in Riyadh, the Salerno Marine Terminal, and obviously also Napoli Afragola station and the technical solutions which set it apart.