EBRD in €80 million loan to upgrade Warsaw metro

By Svitlana  Pyrkalo
@pyrkalo

The EBRD is continuing to support the modernisation of public transport and municipal infrastructure in Poland with a new loan to co-finance the acquisition of new, energy efficient rolling stock by Warsaw Metro. 

Warsaw Metro will use the loan of PLN 322.6 million (equivalent to €80.6 million) to finance part of its programme to purchase 35 metro trains consisting of 210 individual wagons. The new trains will run on Warsaw’s existing metro line as well as a second line.

The second line, which is presently under construction, is a long-awaited investment in the expansion of high-capacity public transport in Warsaw. It is expected to substantially reduce traffic congestion in the city centre and create crucial linkages with the first metro line by allowing users to transfer efficiently from the east side of the Vistula River to the west side of the city.

The existing metro line requires 15 new trains and the new line 20 new trains. Once the second line is finished, the annual number of passengers using the underground system is expected to rise from 117 million to 179 million in 2014.

The project is an important step towards implementing Warsaw’s sustainable urban transport strategy, which aims to shift people away from using motorised transport (private cars and buses) to zero-emission public transport.

By expanding its metro system, Warsaw will be able to reduce its CO2 emissions by approximately 200,000 tonnes a year. The principal carbon benefit is expected to come from a shift by residents to a cleaner, quicker and more energy efficient metro as an alternative to the private car and bus travel. And new rolling stock with innovative, regenerative braking technology will also help to reduce energy consumption.

The loan will be provided for up to 13 years and will consist of PLN 161 million (€40.3 million) for the EBRD’s own account and PLN 161 million (€40.3 million) syndicated to participating commercial banks.

“We are pleased to support such a long-awaited investment in Warsaw. The expanded metro system will be able to service a larger number of passengers and will contribute to the City’s reduction of CO2 emissions by approximately 200,000 tonnes a year,” said Thomas Maier, EBRD Managing Director for Infrastructure.

“The project is an important step contributing to the improvement of the operational efficiency of the Warsaw Metro system. The new metro trains to be supplied by the consortium of Siemens and Newag will require less frequent maintenance reviews than the existing rolling stock while the regenerative breaking technology, together with other advanced technology solutions, will be able to reduce energy consumption by approximately 30-40 per cent as compared with the existing rolling stock currently operated by the company,” said Jerzy Lejk, the President of the Management Board of the Warsaw Metro Company.

Since the beginning of its operations in 1991, the EBRD has invested over €5 billion in Poland in more than 280 projects in various sectors of the country’s economy with a total value of over €18 billion.