The Municipal Council of Budapest made a decision on the refurbishment of metro line 3, as the council approves a considerable loan to fund the project. Opposition parties critised the move as too little too late, but only Együtt-PM voted against the resolution in the council. The decision includes calling a tender for the refurbishment of the line’s Soviet era trains, aged more than 30 years.
After the vote István Tarlós, mayor of Budapest said, the city is ready to move ahead with the renovation project, but further rounds of negotiations are still needed with the government as the financing of the infrastructural upgrade of the line is still unclear. Currently the loan only funds the complete refurbishment of 220 trains and carriages, according to estimates, extending their lifespan by another 20-25 years.
The investment costs EUR 190-205 million (60-65 billion HUF), while buying new carriages could have cost up to EUR 280 million, added István Tarlós. The refurbishment is set to be completed by 2015-2016, but the complete renovation of the tunnels, tracks and stations will probably take even more and could be completed by 2019 at the best. The mayor added, he will consult the development minister to find ways to fund the project from EU funds.
Ferenc Falus, the opposition’s mayor candidate for the upcoming local government elections, said the government should use the EUR 319 million, set aside to move the PM’s office to the Buda Castle, to fund the refurbishment of metro line 3. Jobbik supported the notion, while green party LMP expressed heavy criticism.
via HungaryMatters, MTI photo László Beliczay