Asuncion, Paraguay (Urban Transport News): The Ministry of Public Communications (MoPC) of Paraguay has planned to launch a contract for the construction of the first phase of a light rail system for capital Asunción under the PPP model this year, with the project estimated to require an initial investment of US$380 million.
"The feasibility studies were carried out by Korea Overseas Infrastructure & Urban Development Corporation (KIND), which is under the jurisdiction of the South Korean land and infrastructure ministry (MOLIT)", said the official release issued by MoPC.
The study stated that the light rail system would be 44-km long, with seven stations at Asunción, Puerto Botánico, Luque, Yukyry, Patiño and Areguá which are proposed between the capital’s Estación Central station and the town of Ypacarí. The initial 15 km between Estación Central and the Luque district in the center of the city will consist of a double line, with only one service operating on this section, with three stations.
The first stage of the light rail project between Estación Central-Luque would be developed under the Public-Private Partnership modal. According to the feasibility study, building this 15-km line at ground level would cost US$246mn, while making it an elevated line would raise the CAPEX to US$366mn.
For the second stage, which would involve the rest of the line to Ypacarí, a ground-level line would cost US$390mn and an elevated line would cost US$510mn.
According to demand projectctions of 2026, Once finished, the whole system would transport an estimated 229,000 people per day.
Earlier, the Ministry had launched the tender in 2018 where six bidders were submitted their bids but the tender was cancelled due to financial issues. The bidders were:
The Asuncion Light Rail Project is a PPP project worth US$500 million, building an urban rail line connecting Paraguay’s capital city of Asuncion with a nearby suburb city, Ypacarai. The Project will set a milestone in Paraguay’s railway history, as it constructs an urban railway for the first time in Asuncion, the city which currently only has the aged railway lines built in the colonial period.
Under this MOU, KIND will collaborate with Paraguay’s FEPASA in planning, financing, finding investors, and selecting construction firms for the light rail project.