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The Walloon Government has announced it will launch a new tender for a design, build, finance maintain (DBFM) PPP for Liège Tramway, after Eurostat accounting troubles halted the contract awarded in 2014.
It is Eurostat’s opinion that the investment for the project should go directly to government’s balance sheet and in fact not to be split in several years during the life of the concession. The Walloon Government is planning a new tender process in which it can comply with Eurostat rules for PPPs and exclude the investment of its accounts.
A consortium called Mobiliège and formed by Alstom Transport, BAM PPP PGGM Infrastructure Co-operative (a joint venture of BAM PPP and PGGM), DG Infra (now TDP) and SRIW Environment, was selected in December 2014 to develop the project.
The team beat out competition from the Legiaexpress consortium, which is composed by Vinci Concessions, CFE, Bombardier Transportation and Meridiam Infrastructure Finance II.
The development of the project had already started with the following investment already realized: €15.4 million in studies, €3.3 million in land acquisitions and 14.3 million in displacing utulities and existing infrastructure.
According to sources, the tender process included a compensation of €1.6 million for the selected teamif the project gets canceled. However, it is expected the team led by BAM PPP PGGM Infrastructure Co-operative and Alstom requests a higher compensation for all the damages it will suffer.
The project includes the construction of 11.5 km tramway between the Standard Liege Stadium and the northern district Coronmeuse, as well as the total renovation of the road network. The project would be operated by a fleet of 19 trams.
The project further includes the construction of a tram depot and a P&R facility on the site of the station Bressoux, but also the delivery of trams and the tramway system. A second P&R facility is located on a parking of football club Standard Liege.
The total project investment is estimated at US$522 million.