Metro São Paulo have responded to criticism published in O Estado, insisting that the Line 17 (Gold) project is on track to be operational by the end of 2016, explaining the additional costs involved in current monorail projects, and making assurances regarding the operation of Line 15 (Silver), though admitting initial train speeds are lower than was first presented.
The publication noted a discrepancy between operational details in the Line 15 initial bidding documents and the reality that has been observed over the first year of operation. Trains were expected to circulate at 80km per hour, but are currently operating at 60km.
“The version of CBTC (Communications Based Train Control System) currently available from Barbardier limits the speed of trains to 60km per hour during working hours (between 7am and 7pm). We have been working towards the development and adoption of an updated version of CBTC”, the operator assured the press in a statement this week, insisting speeds will increase with future upgrades.
The publication also claims that project work costs had doubled from R $3.6 billion to R $7.2 billion since the project was first presented.
In response the company explained that “the initial costs reported by studies were incomplete because they did not include civil works at the stations, bus terminals, workshops, road works, electric power, telecommunications and control systems, among others”.
In regards to the progress of Line 17, the operator explained that between 180 and 200 properties would have to be expropriated to complete construction of the track towards Morumbi in the south. It is expected that this process will require at least $200 million to be complete.
Work on Line 18 (Bronze) will begin in February 2016. The project will be dependent on R $2.4 billion in external financing, from the Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Econômico e Social (BNDES) and the Programa de Aceleração do Crescimento (PAC).