Genoa – La Spezia Railway Line and Viaduct of Recco

Name of Project:
Genoa – La Spezia Railway Line and Viaduct of Recco


Ferrovie dello Stato

Construction period:
1914-1922 and 1946-1948

The Ventimiglia–Genoa–Pisa railway line is one of the essential communication systems in Central-Northern Italy, and the segment along the Liguria coast is its key element.

The construction of the connection between Massa and Ventimiglia had been decided on even before the Unification of Italy was proclaimed in 1861, and construction was completed in the early years of the newly established Kingdom.

The country’s development led to a continuous increase in railway traffic, to the extent that, from the early twentieth century, plans began to be discussed for a doubling of the lines, a particularly complex operation for a line built in harsh orographical conditions, squeezed between the coastline and the sea.

The Lodigiani company took part in the work to double the Genoa-La Spezia line from 1914 to 1922, focusing on the stretch lying between Pieve di Sori and Camogli. It was a track with a length of more than seven tunnels: among these of particular importance was the intervention in the Priaro tunnel and, above all, the doubling of the Recco and Camogli tunnels (with the excavation of two new tunnels, 237.50 and 388 meters long, respectively). The commission also included work to enlarge and consolidate the viaduct over the Recco River, a curved bridge almost 400 meters in length.

Thanks to the extension, the Recco station became the main junction of the railway traffic on the line between Genoa and Sestri Levante; for the company, founded in 1906, this intervention on the Riviera di Levante railway line represents one of its most significant early projects.

Lodigiani went back to dealing with the line right after the Second World War: the air raids had struck the coastline railway line very hard, destroying one of the key structures in the line, the Recco viaduct.

To be able to immediately repair the line, Lodigiani built a temporary viaduct consisting of a wooden framework and steel girders, which was completed in just four months. In the meantime, the work to repair the bridge continued, being restored and enlarged by using precast reinforced concrete for the first time ever in Italy.

During those same years another company that is part of today’s Salini Impregilo was active in the reconstruction of the infrastructure of the Genoa-La Spezia line: in 1946 Umberto Girola was awarded a contract to build the temporary wooden structures and restore the Sori and Bogliasco viaduct.

The repairing of the viaduct and the rapid reactivation of the Liguria railway line represent a symbolic episode in Italian post-war Reconstruction: the pride and spirit of sacrifice with which the citizens of Recco faced up to the bombings and the subsequent reconstruction were acknowledged in 1992 when they were awarded a Medaglia d’Oro al Valore Civile by the President of the Italian Republic.

Concrete: 180 tons
Steel: 16.4 tons
Radius: 400 m
Interaxis spans: 50 m
recco 602

The Recco bridge, destroyed in world war ii, represents Italy’s recovery from this terrible period.