PROPOSALS to extend Rio de Janeiro metro Line 1 to Ipanema have moved closer, with the signing of an agreement between the state government, metro operating concessionaire Opportrans, commuter rail operator SuperVia and the national development bank BNDES. The 1·7 km extension from the Line 1 terminus now under construction at Sigueira Campos would add two more stations at Cantagalo and General Osório.

Cost of the extension, which includes a 1 km bored tunnel under the Morro de Cantagalo mountain, is put at R$250m. Of this, the state is expected to contribute R$120m, and SuperVia around R$50m. Civil engineering work will be undertaken by the Brazilian contractor Odebrecht.

The state government has also approved Opportrans’ proposals to build a grade-separated junction to allow through running between Lines 1 and 2 (MR 00 p51).

Last month the state transport department revised the prequalification timetable for the concession to build metro Line 3 (RG 2.01 p82). The aim is to sign a contract by the end of July for a 3·7 km initial section running under Guanabara bay from Largo da Carioca in Rio to Itaboraí near Niterói.

Plans have been also unveiled for a 22 km high-capacity suburban railway linking Niterói and San Gonçalo on the eastern site of the bay. With 14 stations, the elevated line would follow a former rail alignment through several rapidly-expanding satellite towns. Design capacity is 36000 passengers/h in each direction. The line would feed the Niterói - Rio ferry link, and would have an interchange with Line 3 at Itaboraí.