Webuild has secured a €208m contract to expand and upgrade an 18km stretch (Lot 1) of the Ragusa-Catania highway in Sicily, Italy.

The contract, which was awarded by Italian state road operator ANAS (Gruppo FS Italiane), is expected to create up to 300 jobs, as well as see the involvement of around 70 businesses along the supply chain.

The Lot 1 section is part of a wider project to modernise the highway between the two cities, also called Ragusana, which is a strategic corridor for eastern Sicily.

This project will cut down travel times, add services and bolster safety along the route that passes through the provinces of Ragusa, Catania and Siracusa.

Under the contract, Webuild will be responsible for widening and upgrading the section along state highways SS 514 and SS 194 that cross the municipalities of Ragusa and Chiaramonte Gulfi in Ragusa province, from the access roads at SS 115 to SP 5 Licodia Eubea.

This contract also features a construction of a viaduct of over 500m in length, six overpasses and three underpasses.

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The work is expected to commence in the first semester of this year. Eventually, the highway will expand from a two-lane route to a highway with two lanes in either direction as well as emergency lanes.

The company claimed that it is preparing the construction sites to be ‘as sustainable as possible’.

It will deploy new solutions to cut down CO₂ emissions generated by several activities, draw electricity supply from renewable sources, as well as implement a system for a circular economy.

In southern Italy, Webuild is currently working on Mega Lot 3 of the Ionian Highway in Calabria.

It is also involved in providing the executive design and construction of parts of four different sections of the high-speed railway between Naples and Bari.