The line was built in two phases. Paris-Marseille Voyage En Tgv PDF specially modified train performed a series of high-speed tests on the first phase of the LGV Est prior to its opening.
In April 2007, it reached a top speed of 574. The line passes through the French regions of Île-de-France and Grand Est. In 1969, Metz politician Raymond Mondon requested a study of a fast train from Paris to Strasbourg along the route of the planned A4 autoroute. Germany, which was developing the Transrapid maglev system, was long reserved about the TGV system being developed by France. A 1975 study concluded that the passenger traffic to only Alsace and Lorraine would not be enough for the financial feasibility of the line. The LGV Est is a direct result of a project begun in 1985 with the establishment of a working group chaired by Claude Rattier and later by Philippe Essig. Their report provided the basis for preliminary design studies conducted in 1992-93.
The initial 1980s plan extended along a corridor from Paris to Munich. London corridors, and a direct route crossed a region of eastern France far from any major urban area. The following year, Philippe Essig presented the route that would later be built and at the same time addressed the other problem: financing. This route, further north than previous proposals, served Reims and Strasbourg. Financing of this proposal called for contributions from local governments—a first in France for construction of a high-speed line—and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. This was a favorable financial arrangement for SNCF due to low ridership projections and because the population of the towns served were below a threshold for building a high-speed line. On 1 April 1992, the project was added to the master plan of high-speed lines, in which it was classified as a priority project.