mx-Tren Maya map

MEXICO: A consortium led by Mota-Engil of Portugal has been awarded a contract worth US$234m to construct the initial section of the Tren Maya network serving the Yucatan Peninsula.

Mota-Engil and partners China Communications Construction Co, Grupo Cosh Eyasa and Gavil Ingeniería are expected to start work next month on the 227 km section between Palenque and Escárcega.

The Tren Maya project envisages the development of 1 525 km of railway through the five eastern states of Yucatan, Campeche, Quintana Roo, Chiapas and Tabasco, serving 15 stations.

Two routes would connect Palenque with the resort of Cancún. One would follow the existing rail corridor from Palenque through Tenosique, Escárcega and Campeche to Mérida and Valladolid, broadly following the Caribbean coast. The other would diverge at Escárcega and head east through Calakmul to Bacalar before running north to Felipe C Puerto, Tulum and Cancún.

Total cost is put at between 120bn and 150bn pesos, which will be funded through what the national government terms ‘a mixed investment scheme’. The network is expected to take four years to complete.