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European Investment Bank loan kickstarts earthquake proof Bogotá Metro

Bogotá’s first metro line is a step closer after a US$480M (£373M) loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB) has been agreed.

When completed, the new Bogotá metro will run on raised track to avoid earthquake risks along 24km through the so-called Caracas Corridor located in the south-west of the capital where public transport demand is highest.

The project will include the construction of 15 stations and acquisition of 23 trains each able to carry 1,800 passengers.

Forming part of Bogotá’s 2016-2019 Municipal Development Plan, the project includes other schemes to improve public transport in the city such as upgrading the public bus system to link it to the new metro and building 14km of new cycle paths.

The EIB has signed the financing agreements with Empresa Metro de Bogotá to support the construction of the capital’s first metro line. This is the first public sector project financed by the EIB in Colombia.

EIB vice president Emma Navarro said: “For the first time, the EU bank is financing a project in the public sector in Colombia, supporting a large-scale piece of infrastructure that will have major economic and social benefits for the people”.

In total, the project will cost US$4.3bn (£3.3bn) and be partly financed by the European Investment Bank loan of US$480M (£373M) and contributions of US$600M |(£466M) each from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD). It is expected to be completed in 2024.

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