Toot! Toot! — sweet!
THREE new passenger train projects Via Reuters:
Mexico’s government will tender three passenger train projects next year worth 97 billion pesos ($7.4 billion), two of which will service the capital’s sprawling metropolitan area, the country’s transport ministry said on Tuesday.
Project details will be published ahead of the contract tender in early 2014, the ministry said in a statement.
The new trains will connect the country’s capital with the cities of Toluca and Queretaro, in addition to a train traversing tourist destinations along Mexico’s southern Yucatan peninsula.
The 237-kilometer (147 mile) Mexico City-Queretaro route will cost about $3.3 billion.
The 47-mile route connecting Mexico City with Toluca, capital of the state of Mexico, will cost $2.9 billion, while the nearly 200-mile Yucatan route will cost $1.2 billion.
(If you’re wondering why the much longer Yucatan route is so much less expensive, it’s because the Yucatan Peninsula is flat… and less urbanized that the other two routes)
One irony in all this is that Mexico had decent passenger rail up until the neo-liberal “privatization” push of the 1990s. Seems selling off the rail lines (which promptly dropped passenger service) was centavo-wise and peso-foolish. I took the new Ferrocarriles Suburbanos from Buenvavista to Tulitlán (State of Mexico) recently… 45 pesos ($3.42 US$) … which would make it a reasonable commuting cost if one were to live there and commute to the city. Not that Tultitlán is a particularly charming place, and it appears some U.S. style “developments” are popping up on the edge of what is a very small city.