ON FEBRUARY 12 Metropolitano de Tenerife SA announced the award of civil works contracts for the 12·3 km light rail route that will connect Santa Cruz with La Laguna (RG 1.03 p10). MTSA Vice-President Víctor Pérez said that the project was entering ’a decisive phase’, with €91·8m of contracts awarded for work to begin in March. The route is due to open within 35 months, in late 2006 or early 2007.

Construction of the route between Avenida de la Trinidad in Laguna and Camino de las Mantecas will be undertaken by Dragados, TECSA and PLD for €21·1m. Under a contract worth €50·6m, a consortium of COMSA, NECSO, PPL and TOP will build Section 2 to the transport interchange in Santa Cruz. FCC, Syocsa and VVO will build the depot for €19·9m, on a 30000m2 site at Taco. Alstom is supplying a fleet of 20 Citadis LRVs for €49·8m, the first of which is due to arrive within 19 months of the final contract signature.

Total cost of the project is €228m, of which €138m is being lent by the European Investment Bank. Another €10m is to be provided during the construction phase by Transdev, Somague and Ineco, which as the Tenemetro consortium hold a 14% stake in promoter and future operator MTSA. The island government holds 85·9%.