Rionegro train prepares data for bidding

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This week will begin in a firm the process of selection of the concessionaire that will build and operate a Light Rail Type APM (acronym in English of the Movement of People Automated) and their stations for Rionegro.

The fact that will give the departure will be the release of the data room, a website where the studies and designs related to the APM, carried out during the structuring, which was in charge of the Financial Development Fund, Fonade.

The APM, according to the designs, would have 17.8 kilometers on elevated viaducts, with 14 stations to José María Córdova airport and a fleet of 28 wagons. Vehicles will be operated without a driver, at an average speed of 38 kilometers per hour. It would have electrical technology, with a single track of 13.06 km and a double track of 4.50 km, with a daily demand of 29,000 users.

The studies and designs that are part of this data room will be available for information purposes for national and foreign companies interested in developing the work, according to Mayor Andrés Julián Rendón.

Pending collateral

Decree 87 of 2011 establishes that the Ministry of Transport is in charge of formulating the technical regulation in matters of transport and transit of the road, sea, river and rail modes. As the APM belongs to the Iron mode, Rionegro requires its endorsement to tender the system.

“We hope that Mintransporte will review the documents. Once we get this approval, we start the bidding. We hope it will be awarded in October, ” Rendón explained.

The other favourable concept that was required was that of the Ministry of Finance on contingent liabilities of the APM, those under which an entity provides for the payment of an amount in favour of the contractor, which is subject to an obligation.

The president explained that the requirement changed during the discussion of the 2018-2022 National Development Plan. They are now the same territorial entities have to certify the remuneration of the investment and the anticipation of the contingency.

Financing, the mess

The process of contracting the APM was stopped between October 2018 and March 2019 by a precautionary measure that suspended the effects of the agreement 006 of 2018, issued by the Council of Rionegro, which authorized the mayor to commit exceptional future vigences for $5 billion, between 2023 and 2047, the amount with which the railway system will be built.

Council member of Rionegro, Ricardo Nieto, whose legal team demanded the agreement that approves the future years, said that they are waiting for the first instance of a nullity action filed. “It is totally irresponsible to tender for a legal problem. We believe that the judge ruled against the project, ” he said.

He said that today there will be another nullity action for the breach of another agreement ordering a popular consultation to carry out this type of project. “They never consulted the citizenry, ” he criticized.

Common in Asia and Europe

Automated and non-driver transport systems have been common since the mid-last century in Europe and Asia. In Japan, for example, the prototype in the 80’s the line was one of the rapid transit system in Hiroshima, in addition to the modes of Kanazawa, Kobe and the coast of Tokyo.

Andrés Emiro Díez Restrepo, a professor in the faculty of Engineering of the UPB and transportation expert, said that the APM is an alternative to medium capacity, with infrastructure, lightweight, and easily implemented, but difficult to upgrade.

“The system chosen must be able to be re-branded in the future, according to the increase in demand, and be able to integrate into other modes. It would be good to look for platforms that facilitate the operation with other municipalities. The solution in the East must be 100 years away because of its potential to become a mega-city,” he suggested .

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