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Meet the Green Way

tren

The Via Verde or Green Route in the Subbetica region has resulted in the recovery of the area's Tren del Aceite or Oil Train line, to be used and enjoyed by cyclist , walkers and, occasionally, on horseback. The route is 58 kilometres long, and links the towns of Lucena, Cabra, Doña Mencia, Zuheros and Luque.

The beautiful scenery of Sierra Subbetica nature park and the Laguna del Salobral nature reserve combines with the railway architecture that has been conserved including bridges, stations, level crossing guard houses and even a tunnel.

The Oil Train Information Centre in Cabra is a reference point for the route, and recreates the history of his railway line inaugurated in 1893. The Via Verde de la Subbetica finds its continuation in the province of Jaen with the Via Verde del Aceite or Green Route Oil, and the two make up practically the entirety of the old oil railway line.

Oil train

tunel

On 30th April 1875, Jorge Loring (late the Marquis of Loring) added his name to the railway construction project, which included the following extract: 'with the major cities in Andalusia now linked by rail, there still remain entire districts with inexhaustive sources of riches... well known is the agricultural importance of towns such as Lucena, Cabra, Baena,

Martos and Jaen, whose main source of wealth comes from exporting, cereals and wine, and yet, as a result of their distance from railway lines, find their trade hindered by the overlong and defective forms of transport'.

The initial cost of the project was set at 32,205,400 pesetas (193,558.35 €) and two years later, on July 1877, 'La Gaceta de Madrid' (later the B.O.P.), announced that the line had been granted to Jorge Loring y Oyazabal, as representative of the Larios if Malaga Syndicate and other investors, such as the Marquis of Gandara and the Banque Camond of Paris, who joined the project with the aim of foended the Andalusian Railway Company, which would, together with the Ministry for Public Works, created the line and its infraestructure.

In order to alleviate the radial effect of the railway lines laid by the major companies, in 1877 the Andalusian railway Company created a shorter route from Madrid to Algeciras and Malaga. This provided a rail service to an emerging area, with outlets to both ports for the heavy metals mined around Linares and the food products from Jaen and the south of Cordoba, leading what became as the old train.

On 22nd January 1893, Mr. Contreras, chief engineer of the new company, addressed the governor of Cordoba and Jaen, telling them: 'It is an honour for me to inform you that as of yesterday, the entirety of the iron line from Puente Genil to Linares is open for bussiness'. The new line (1877) was 177 kms. long with 17 stations (7 in the Subbetica region: Lucena, Cabra, Luque-Baena, Doña Mencia, Moriles-Horcajo, Zuheros y Campo Real).

The line entered its first crisis in the 1950s, and the tracks were last used by a train in 1985.

Maps and guides

viaverde

Archivos coordenadas GPS

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Constructions

Viaducts viaductos

There are four viaducts along the route. The most important of them, in terms of length and the views they provide, are the Viaducto de la Sima at 132.30 metres, and the Viaducto de Zuheros at 104 metres.

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Active Sports Areas deportes

There are two Active Sports Areas along the Via Verde de la Subbetica. These are located at two bridges, the Puente de Zuheros (72,09 P.k.) and the Puente de la Sima (83,88 P.k). These areas are fully equiped for rock climbing, abseiling and bungee jumping. Use of these areas is subject to regulations.

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Stations and stopping points apeadero

There are five stations and one stopping point along the Via Verde de la Subbetica. Two of them (Luque and Doña Mencia) are now used as restaurants. The renovation of Lucena station as tourist and leisure centre (rural restaurant, tourist office, and information office for customs and traditions) is taken place.

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Oil Train Information Centre centro aceite

The centre recreates a railway station from the 1920- 1930 period, featuring various rooms and atmospheres from the era. For example, there is an area on the history of th Oil Train, recreating a railway platform.

Another area deals with the district's olive groves, and a part of the museum is given over to the Via Verde de la Subbetica. There is also a bar, a souvenir shop and bycicles for hire.

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And also

Rest Areas

Tunnel of the Plantio

Houses

Lagoon of the Salobral