Heads of agreement for a 25 km north-south rail service in Buenos Aires have been signed by the Argentinian government, the city administration and suburban concessionaire Ferrovías, which hopes to complete the first phase of the Tren del Este project from Aristóbulo del Valle to Caminito within 12 months of starting work.

Expected to cost a total of US$60m, the project involves the introduction of DMU service calling at 14 existing and new stations on a new north-south route made up of existing passenger and freight alignments. Several of these would serve the capital’s four large football stadia.

From Aristóbulo del Valle, Tren del Este services would use Ferrovías’ existing 1000m gauge Belgrano Norte route to a point close to its Retiro terminus. Here they would diverge onto reconditioned dockside trackage to cross the city to the freight terminal at Catalinas Sur. For the last stage to Güemes, an existing broad gauge branch would be converted to carry the new service. o