US$2 Billion Highway Tunnel Below Puerto Madero Could Open In 2016

Patrick Archer ba government, buenos aires events, foreign investment, real estate, us companies

A proposed highway tunnel below Puerto Madero could bridge northern and southern auto corridors, alleviate downtown Buenos Aires traffic and spark a new wave of downtown real estate development.

If approved, boring machines could begin carving the 2.5 kilometer underground tunnel this year which would connect three major downtown highways by mid-2016 if the project receives both municipal and federal approval.

The project could do much more than expedite the flow of cars and trucks under Buenos Aires, says La Nacion’s Angeles Castro. Transportation officials want to build a new underground multimodal passenger center which would link new train and subway lines.

The proposed rail line could run from Ezeiza to Aeroparque with stops at Retiro and Constitucion, while the new subway line could link Retiro with La Boca. Global companies serving as project advisors include CH2M Hill, The Louis Berger Group, Odebrecht and Supercemento.

If construction begins this year, the Puerto Madero docks will be completely drained and, once the tunnel is complete, they would be refilled at a lower level of three meters to allow sailboats to navigate through the docks. Two 1.25 kilometer on-ramps at each end of the tunnel would extend the total project length to 5 kilometers.

According to proponents of the tunnel project, investors would recoup their investment in ten years through new revenue streams from public-private partnerships to develop commercial and residential high-rises and underground robotic parking systems. (Full Story in Spanish)

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