US$ 481 million loan for Sao Paulo Metro

By Chris Sleight11 March 2010

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has approved a US$ 481 million loan to the Brazilian state of Sao Paulo to upgrade Line 5 (Purple Line) of the city's metro system.

The expansion is expected to increase the capacity of the Purple Line more than fivefold, with the number of users expected to rise from the current 120000 to 644000 when it becomes fully operational in 2013.

The IDB loan will be used to upgrade the existing fleet of six-car trains, while the state of Sao Paulo will finance the construction of the new 12 km section of the line and its 11 stations. The state will also purchase some 26 new six-car trains to run on the extended Purple Line.

The extension will connect the current Purple Line terminal station, Largo Treze, with Chácara Klabin on Line 2 (Green Line) of the metro system. According to the IDB, this will reduce the travel time from some of the city's low-income southern Suburbs to the downtown area by as much as 54 minutes.

The extension is also expected to help alleviate traffic problems, with commuters abandoning busses and their cars in favour of the metro. The IDB says this could cut fuel consumption by 50 million litres of diesel and 70 million litres of petrol per year, cutting pollutants by 17000 tonnes per year and CO2 emissions by 257000 tonnes per year.

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