Good news for Santiago comes from the Ministry of Public Works (MOP). Recently, it has just been announced that the tender for the Airport Electric Train Concession Project will be carried out.
This is in addition to the broad portfolio of concession projects that the MOP launched a few months ago, which include new mobility and transportation options for the entire territory. In particular, those options that improve public transport through means of sustainable mobility such as trams, cable cars and light rail. In addition to not being polluting in their operation, they have an excellent ability to be located in neighborhoods or avenues without affecting their urban design. This is observed in European cities, where the tram or light rail can be located on avenues and detonate new centralities.
As a society, we generate all the efforts so that private transportation projects such as the train to the airport come to fruition. These aim to directly improve the quality of life of the people of Santiago, allowing to partly slow down the growth of trips where the use of the car has been growing, such as to/from the airport.
This project, without a doubt, has started the discussion among experts about what would be the best layout. As a starting point, we must not only think about it according to its execution, rolling stock and maintenance costs, but we must favor the option that generates the best social return on investment. Today and tomorrow.
This means that we must adequately answer several questions.
Which layout benefits the largest amount of current and projected resident and floating population?
What layout would make it possible to better locate equipment and new homes around its stations?
What design and rolling stock generates the least urban impact on its surroundings, allowing the placement of activities and the design of quality public spaces around its stations?
By adequately resolving these questions, we will add to an investment project, an opportunity for urban renewal in an area that has been deprived of public infrastructure in recent times.
This new generation of transport projects should be considered as a starting point for good urban design. Being infrastructures capable of not only fulfilling their original mission, but also generating positive externalities for our city and, specifically, for the neighborhood where they are located.
The projects that are designed, for example, for the future Metro stations of Lines 7, 8 and 9, the Bicentennial Cable Car to Ciudad Empresarial or the layout and stations that are contemplated to accommodate the Santiago-Valparaíso Train, will be challenges where the Infrastructure must be accompanied by adequate and specific urban planning, which rescues and enhances the benefits of investment. Time, we have.