Ukrainian city metro boost

By Sandy Guthrie27 July 2012

The Ukrainian city of Dnipropetrovsk is to receive a €152 million sovereign loan from the European Bank for Reconstruction & Development (EBRB) to develop its metro system.

The EBRD said the project, which is expected to be co-financed on an equal basis by the European Investment Bank (EIB), would finance the completion of the existing metro line, which will now link the suburbs with the city centre.

The loan is for the benefit of Dnipropetrovskiy Metropolitan, the municipal company operating the metro system in the city.

It is said that it is aiming to provide an efficient, fast and low-carbon public transport solution for one of the largest industrial cities in the country.

In particular, the project will extend the existing metro line by 4km and add three new metro stations. On completion, the metro traffic flow is expected to double to over 20 million people by 2026, while also providing much needed congestion relief to the busiest part of Dnipropetrovsk city centre.

The project preparation was supported by the government of Austria and through the EBRD Shareholder Special Fund. The EBRD said that further assistance, which was necessary to achieve important institutional and regulatory improvements, was required to ensure the city enjoys sustainable long-term services of high-quality. A grant funding package of over €900,000 will be available from the European Union's Neighbourhood Investment Facility towards these objectives. The EBRD said that the funding would, in particular, cover areas of electronic ticketing, corporate development, public service contracting, procurement and implementation support. The optimisation of transport routes in Dnipropetrovsk will be supported by technical co-operation funds from the EIB.

Jean-Patrick Marquet, EBRD director for municipal and environmental infrastructure, said, "Our goal is to support the development of clean, efficient and modern urban transport in Ukraine, and the Dnipropetrovsk metro project is part of this strategy."

He said the existing transport system, which was based on "ageing and polluting buses and minibuses", was no longer good for the city.

"By introducing a sustainable and clean urban transport, we bring a range of environmental and economic benefits, such as travel time savings, a reduction in the reliance on private car travel and lower emissions."

The EBRD said it was the largest financial investor in Ukraine. To date, the Bank has committed over €7.4 billion through 293 projects.

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