Bogota representatives hope to know the time that would delay the delivery of the first tranche if the changes proposed by the Executive are approved
Start of works of the First Line of the Bogotá Metro (Colprensa – Camila Díaz)
The request of the national government to evaluate the possibility of building a section of the first underground Bogotá Metro Line, contrary to the initial elevated design, once again raised questions in one of the most important projects in the capital. For this reason, the Monitoring Commission requested an emergency meeting with the Chinese consortium that is in charge of the work.
The request was issued after the Mayor Claudia López and the Minister of Transportation, Guillermo Reyes, reported that a meeting had been held with the Line 1 Metro Consortium to carry out studies regarding costs, times and the possibility of undergrounding the section of the Caracas Avenue of the initial layout of the system.
“Since the rumors began about the possible modifications to the section of Caracas on line 1, there was concern among the Representatives, Senators and councilors, members of the Commission, about the risk that the project would take longer and the additional costs that would bring”, pointed out the members of the Commission.
Follow-up Commission for the Bogotá Metro
Several council members had already warned of the possibility that the government of President Gustavo Petro would try to introduce changes in the project. Since he was mayor, he proposed an underground design, he carried out the studies, but Enrique Peñalosa decided to undertake an elevated project that was continued by Mayor López.
But it was not until last November, when they officially confirmed the request made to the consortium after a private meeting. “At no time has the President thought that Line 1 and Line 2 will not go, but rather that the projects continue,” Reyes said, adding that the Colombian president has indeed requested that the first line be underground. .
IN CONTEXT: The first line of the Bogota Metro could be underground
The Chinese ambassador to Colombia, Lan Hu, Since the consortium that is in charge of the work of the Bogotá Metro is a company of the government of that country, he also stated that the possibility of modifying some of the sections or the entire First Line to be underground is being studied. However, the Chinese official also warned that, if this change in the Metro is approved, legal and financial difficulties will arise that would further delay construction.
That is precisely what worries congressmen and councilors who are members of the Bogota Metro Follow-up Commission. “Let us remember that the Bogotá metro is the most important work for mobility in the capital, that the people of Bogotá have been waiting for it for 80 years, it has a budget and a work progress of more than 16% on its first line,” they pointed out in their letter. .
According to this group of representatives from the capital, there was peace because the government had announced at the junction that it maintained its support for the project, but its current requests cast doubt on that provision. “The Commission ensures that it is necessary to have first-hand information so that Bogota citizens are certain that the work will be delivered within the stipulated times,” they requested.
The president of the Council of Bogotá , also pointed out that the fear is that the work will be delayed even more. “We hope that due to political divisions and personal egos it will not be cut short. Today what we need is for construction to begin. Today an important phase has already been advanced and the discussion if it is underground or aerial has already been overcome. Therefore, we ask President Petro not to truncate the development of the city simply for a personal, political issue,” said Samir Abisambra.
According to the lobbyist, the first two lines, the first elevated and the second underground, are already insured and the previous government committed resources. But, in his concept, the new request to review the design responds to a political role.