Conclusions of the meeting to analyze the Metro: What would you change?

Conclusions of the meeting to analyze the Metro: What would you change?

After a meeting between President Gustavo Petro and the mayoress of Bogotá, Claudia López, together with representatives of the Government, the District Administration and the Chinese consortium in charge of the execution of the Metro works in the capital of the country, the options were analyzed for the adjustments in the construction of the first line of the project, through which it would be sought to be underground.

(See also: Transfer of electrical infrastructure continues due to Metro works)

Between the five options presented on the table, four of them were discarded, anticipating the financial, economic and legal risks that these changes may imply.

Only one of the recommendations would not modify the object of the contract, nor would it exceed a possible addition of 50% of the original value of the concession and could satisfy a demand for 20,000 additional passengers.

It is worth clarifying that the five alternatives presented would imply an additional cost to the original contract of between 8 and 17 billion pesos. In addition, its delivery in operation would be delayed, since it would no longer be in 2028 but in 2035 or more.

After the meeting that lasted for more than two and a half hours, the national government and the Bogotá mayor’s office reached some agreements regarding the construction of the Bogotá subway.

“The consortium delivered five options that it analyzed, of which it recommended one for technical and financial feasibility and that is to extend the route from 72nd street to underground 100th street with three additional stations” said Mayor Claudia López.

The consortium says that preferably only 3.9 kilometers should be increased for economic, legal and financial reasons, since it considers that this option would not modify the
object of the contract.

(Underground section of the Metro would cost up to $17 billion more.)

Four options were ruled out by the consortium, including undergrounding the stretch from Av. Primero de Mayo to 72 via Av. Caracas, as the president of the republic had suggested. And he added that this option is legally very risky.

However, the President of the Republic considers that it is possible to modify the object of the contract without suffering major legal injuries. He insisted on his proposal to underground the first line and his proposal is that 1 km be made through tunnels from Carrera 50 with Calle Primera de Mayo to Calle 72 in a journey of more than 13 km underground.

But this would imply additional costs and for the moment the law contemplates that the co-financing of the national government cannot be more than 70%.

In this sense, the Minister of Transportation Guillermo Reyes explained that President Petro said that this norm can be modified in the development plan that will be presented for consideration by Congress in the extraordinary sessions on February 6. He affirmed that with this modification the National Government will finance all the resources.

And although Petro said at the meeting that he had two legal concepts that made the modification of the contract viable, uncertainty still persists in the Mayor’s Office and the Chinese concessionaire, it is for this reason that it was agreed that the discussion will continue in two tables to continue the analysis and reconvene a meeting to present the results.

One of them will be legal and will be directed by the Legal Secretary of the Presidency, Vladimir Fernández, and the Legal Secretary of the Mayor’s Office, William Mendieta.

And the other technical and financial, because the analysis presented by the company is that the option preferred by the president “is neither legal nor economically viable, because it exceeds the eventual value of up to 50% of the value of the current concession.” Claudia Lopez stated.

In any case, the mayoress Claudia López insisted that the works corresponding to the first subway line under no circumstances will be stopped and that they will continue today.

I have insisted to the President that it is not the proposal or the interest of Bogotá and Cundinamarca that they replace one investment with another: that of the eventual undergrounding of the first metro line in exchange for not contemplating Regiotram or the 3 cables. If we reach an agreement, it must be an agreement on the three things because the priorities that follow in the Bogotá region are the 3 cables and the Regiotram”, the Mayor pointed out.

With information from EL TIEMPO

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Written by Editor TLN

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