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Bordeaux–Toulouse High Speed Rail

Further high speed railway plans and further ZAD contesting reckless development plans


The LGV Bordeaux–Toulouse is an approximately 200 km long French high-speed rail project reserved for passenger traffic between Bordeaux and Toulouse in the south-west of France. Its dual aim is: • To ensure high-speed service of the Toulouse region through an extension of the LGV Sud Europe Atlantique and reduce the journey time between Paris and Toulouse to slightly over 3 hours. To complete that service though, the high speed connection between Tours and Bordeaux has to be completed as well.

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Bordeaux–Toulouse High Speed Rail
State or province:Aquitaine, Midi-Pyrénées
Location of conflict:Bordeaux, Toulouse, Agen, Montauban and other towns
Accuracy of locationMEDIUM (Regional level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict. 1st level:Infrastructure and Built Environment
Type of conflict. 2nd level:Transport infrastructure networks (roads, railways, hydroways, canals and pipelines)
Specific commodities:Tourism services
Project Details and Actors
Project details

60 minutes: journey time between Bordeaux and Toulouse

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Project area:4,800
Level of Investment:3,238,950,000 - 10,796,500,000
Type of populationSemi-urban
Affected Population:800,000
Start of the conflict:25/05/2005
Company names or state enterprises:Vinci Group (Vinci) from France
Société nationale des chemins de fer français; "National society of French railways" or "French National Railway Company" (SNCF) from France
Réseau ferré de France (RFF) from France
Relevant government actors:Ministry of Transport
The Aquitaine and Midi-Pyrenees regions
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:Alternative LGV: association of local councillors against high speed rail
Très Grande Vigilance du Brulhois et de l'Agenais.
Très Grande Vigilance Albret
Conflict & Mobilization
IntensityLOW (some local organising)
Reaction stagePREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups mobilizing:Farmers
Local government/political parties
Social movements
Local scientists/professionals
Forms of mobilization:Creation of alternative reports/knowledge
Development of a network/collective action
Development of alternative proposals
Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism
Media based activism/alternative media
Public campaigns
Referendum other local consultations
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Air pollution, Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Global warming, Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Noise pollution, Soil erosion, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover, Reduced ecological / hydrological connectivity, Food insecurity (crop damage)
Other Environmental impactsCreation of multiple quarries to provide construction materials.
Health ImpactsPotential: Accidents, Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…)
Socio-economical ImpactsPotential: Displacement, Loss of livelihood, Land dispossession, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Other socio-economic impactsPotential negative effects on local journeys
Project StatusPlanned (decision to go ahead eg EIA undertaken, etc)
Conflict outcome / response:Application of existing regulations
Development of alternatives:Upgrade the existing lines instead of building a new one expensive and exclusive.
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:No
Briefly explain:The project constitutes an example of harmful development.
Sources & Materials
Juridical relevant texts related to the conflict (laws, legislations, EIAs, etc)

Décret no 92-355 du 1er avril 1992 approuvant le schéma directeur national des liaisons ferroviaires à grande vitesse
[click to view]

References to published books, academic articles, movies or published documentaries

Report. Analyse comparative des options de modernisation des dessertes ferroviaires sur le tronçon Bordeaux – Toulouse - Première partie -. Alternative LGV, Cabinet d'Etudes RObert Claraco.
[click to view]

Report of the commission of enquiry on the railway project (French)
[click to view]

Links to general newspaper articles, blogs or other websites

ZAD Agen.
[click to view]

Journalist report on the ZAD of Agen (French)
[click to view]

Article on The Economist on high speed rail in France
[click to view]

Tres Grand Vigilance en Albret. Association opposing high speed rail.
[click to view]

Meta information
Contributor:Alfred Burballa Noria
Last update18/08/2019
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