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Project Update

Panama City Metro, Republic of Panama [free access]

October 1, 2018

Developer/operator: Metro de Panamá


The consortium of Spain-based FCC Construcciones and Brazil-based Odebrecht Transport (Consorcio Línea 2) is constructing and financing Line 2 Phase I under a USD1.86-billion contract secured in May 2015. The scope of work includes design engineering, civil construction and secondary works including supply of rolling stock and initial commissioning. The work is scheduled to be completed in 46 months.


Project description: Expansion of the metro system in Panama City 


Background: The network comprises one line, Line 1. It spans 15.8 km from Albrook near the airport to San Isidro, covering 14 stations (eight underground and six elevated). 


Funding: Line 1 has been developed at a cost of USD1.88 billion with financing from the  Compagnie Française d'Assurance pour le Commerce Extérieur (COFACE), Compañía Española de Seguros de Crédito a la Exportación (CESCE), Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), Corporación Andina de Fomento (CAF) and the European Investment Bank (EIB).


Rolling stock and technology: Alstom has supplied 20 three-car trains and will supply another 70 cars by 2019 (40 cars to increase the length of the existing 20 trains from three cars to five cars and the remaining 30 cars to be configured as six five-car trains). The first five-car train started operations in June 2018. There will be 26 five-car trains in 2019.


Tracks are standard gauge (1,435 mm). Power is sourced from the third rail (750 V DC). Alstom Panama SA has provided the power supply and Urbalis communication-based train control system (CBTC) signalling system. The company also provides preventive maintenance for rolling stock, power supply and signalling systems.


Ridership: The average daily passenger ridership is between 240,000 and 280,000 passengers.


Extensions/Capital projects: The master plan for Panama City Metro proposes the development of four lines. 


Line 2: It will be constructed in two phases. 


Phase I will span 21 km (entirely elevated) from San Miguelito to La Dona, covering 16 stations. It is expected to cost USD2.06 billion. It will connect with Line 1 and the Metrobus bus rapid transit (BRT) system. Construction commenced in October 2015 and passenger service is scheduled to commence in January 2019. It is expected to have ridership of 16,000 passengers per hour in each direction initially and a maximum of 40,000 passengers during rush hours.


The consortium of Spain-based transport company Transportes Metropolitanos de Barcelona (TMB), Panama-based engineering group Aguas y Estructuras SA (Ayesa) and US-based Louis Berger (Consorcio PML2) has provided technical support under a USD28.7-million contract secured in July 2014.


Alstom will supply 21 five-car Metropolis train sets under a EUR300-million contract secured in September 2015. The consortium of Alstom TSO-CIM, Thales and Sofratesa secured the USD128.5-million contract in July 2015 to provide engineering and maintenance (E&M) for a period of three years.


Phase II will connect San Miguelito to Miramar.


Line 3: The line will be a monorail. It will span 26 km and cover 14 stations. Seven companies/consortia were shortlisted in September 2018 to design, construct, supply rolling stock, install railway systems and commission the line. These companies have been invited to submit bids by January 25, 2019. .


Japan-based Hitachi Limited and Mitsubishi Corporation have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Metro de Panamá to supply railway infrastructure systems. Hitachi will supply 28 six-car monorail trains, its subsidiary Ansaldo STS will supply signalling, telecommunication and power systems, and Mitsubishi will manage commercial issues.


In April 2016, Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA) finalised a JPY29.575-billion financing agreement for construction. The loan has a term of 20 years and a grace period of six years.


Line 4: The line will link Albrook to Rana de Oro and connect with Line 1.


Recent developments: