La Paz moves forward on cable car design

Wednesday, January 22, 2003

Bolivian capital La Paz's municipal government has tentatively approved designs and bidding rules for a US$30mn cable car project and "hopes" the city university will endorse the plan this week, prefecture concessions manager Amelia Paz told BNamericas.

With the university's approval, La Paz will clear the scheme, allowing planners to announce bidding by end-February and launch bidding rules in March, Paz said. The university needs to OK the project first because it is a civil entity and will be affected by the plan.

The system would connect the capital city with the satellite city of El Alto, whose municipal government has already approved bidding rules. La Paz was originally expected to approve the project in October 2002, but minor design specifications such as tower locations stalled its ratification.

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The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) drafted the bidding rules and has been retained to supervise the ensuing concession process. The system, first proposed in 2001, is designed to shuttle up to 5,000 people an hour between the two cities, with each car holding up to 30 passengers.