Haifa - Nazareth light rail signing (Photo Yoav Abramovich)

ISRAEL: The €1bn PPP contract to design, finance, build, operate and maintain the 41 km Nofit Light Rail inter-urban line between Haifa and Nazareth has been signed by the HN - Light Rail Line Ltd consortium and project promoter Trans Israel.

The consortium of Alstom and local partners Electra and Minrav had been named preferred bidder in February.

Alstom’s share is valued at more than €700m, including the €140m maintenance contract, and includes the track, 1·5 kV DC electrification, signalling, communications, depot equipment and supply of 54 Citadis trams.

Operations and maintenance will be undertaken by a joint venture of Electra Afikim, Minrav and Alstom for around 21 years.

Haifa Nazareth light rail impression (Image Yenon Design and Research Ltd)

‘We are committed to continuing to do our utmost in creating an efficient, fast and innovative transport system for the benefit of the entire Israeli population’, said Eran Cohen, Managing Director of Alstom Israel, on May 16.

‘This important project is another step in Israel’s public transport evolution, and a real engine of growth for the entire northern region.’

The tram-train style line will have 20 stations including park-and-ride sites. Services will run every 4 min at peak times, with speeds up to 100 km/h. Ridership is estimated at 120 000 passengers/day.