The mayor of Bogota has confirmed that the green light has been given for initial feasability studies into light rail for Colombia’s capital, local media report.
Bogota’s Mayor Gustavo Petro has confirmed preliminary stages for the construction will be undertaken by three engineering firms, “Pedro Gomez”, “Nexis Egis Infraestructura” [sic] and “Sainc”. The companies will first look at the feasibility of installing a light rail system along “Carrera Septima”, Bogota’s primary North-South thoroughfare for traffic.
“The light rail metro will run down Carrera Septima from Sabana station until Calle 193, covering 23 kilometres serviced by 23 stations, carrying a cost of $565 million. We expect that the new transportation system will service an average of 300 000 people per day,” said Petro.
The same companies will also examine the possibility of a second line in the capital’s South, that would encompass 18 stations over ten kilometres, accommodating 200 000 passengers per day. The cost for the Southern line is estimated to be around $312 million.
The feasibility studies will take nine months. Assuming all goes well, construction will begin in January 2014 and take approximately 36 months.
Bogota’s transport system consists of the Transmilenio bus network and smaller independently run mini-buses and, while extensive, has been criticised for being unable to cope with the overwhelming demand. The construction of a light rail system would contribute substantially to the reduction of congestion in the city, and ease the stress placed on the aforementioned modes of transport.