Eight groups introduced bids to win a contract to build an
8.8-kilometer tunnel across the Colombian Central Andean Cordillera
estimated to cost 719 billion Colombian pesos ($330 million), the
Colombian road authority said Monday.
The government will pick the winner on Nov. 10, Transportation Minister
Andres Uriel Gallego said at a press conference on Monday. The work
would start in December and end in 2012, he added.
The government said it will use two criteria to select the winner: the
cost of the project and the experience of the contractor.
The tunnel, which will be built in the area known as La Linea, will
cross the Andes near the Los Nevados National Park, the location of the
snowy peak of the Nevado Ruiz.
The tunnel will allow cars and trucks to save up to two hours on the
road between the country’s capital Bogota and its main port
Buenaventura, 700 kilometers west of the capital. The tunnel will
replace a steep, narrow, winding mountain road.
Among the bidders is a consortium that consists of South Korean
engineering companies Posco Engineering & Construction Co. Ltd.
and Daewoo Engineering & Construction Co. Ltd.
A second group is led by Italy’s Impregilo SpA and includes
local investors. Two other groups include Chinese and Colombian
investors, another consortium is a Brazilian-Colombian group, and three
of the groups consist only of Colombian construction firms.
More than 100 companies had filed as potential bidders back in May.