Government launches consultation on light railway in Macau

13 November 2006

Macau, China, 13 Nov – The Macau government said Monday it would launch a consultation of the territory’s population on the project for building a high-level light railway.

The railway may be partially in operation in 2010 and will cost around 4.2 billion patacas (US$525 million).

The Office for Infrastructure Development said that the public consultation would last four months, after which it would present a report to the government for a later decision and launch a public tender for building the light railway.

The first stage of the project will be a line beginning at Portas do Cerco, the border between Macau and the Chinese mainland, and end at the International Airport on Taipa island, with stations at the Sea Terminal, the Barra area, the Macau Stadium and Macau Dome.

Altogether there will be 22 kilometers of lines and 22 stations and each train will have the capacity to transport 200 people in two carriages that will carry out the journey in 28 minutes.

The trains will be fully automatic and run for 19 hours per day at an average speed of 33 kilometers per hour. Annual running costs are estimated at 90 million patacas.

According to the government’s bureau’s calculations, the first line of the light railway will take four years to build and ticket prices will be between three and four patacas, according to whether a passenger travels only in Macau itself or Taipa or travels between the two.

The proposal for a light railway has come at a time when traffic in Macau is becoming increasingly heavy due to the increased number of tourists and new entertainment facilities.

Macau currently has a total of 27.5 square kilometers and a population of just over 500,000 people, as well as receiving around 60,000 visitors per day. (macauhub)