At 10 a.m. on July 21 (Columbia Time), a delegation led by Wu Yu - the person in charge of Bogota Metro Line 1 Project Franchising Company, Andres Trujiyo - Secretary of the Board of the Company, Andres Escova - President of Bogota Metro Company, and Cogulas Estupine - Director of Transport Authority of Bogota went to call on Claudia Lopez - the incumbent mayor of Bogota at the municipal government, having close exchanges about the implementation plan and current progress of the project. Zhu Debin, the general manager of the project general manager department and over 30 members of the core team attended the conference by video at the branch meeting place.
At the meeting, Wu Yu reported the responsibilities and work scope of the project partners and major suppliers, franchisees and owner, the core construction plan of the project, the preliminary preparation of the project, the financing progress, the impact of the COVID-19, and the demands for the municipal government. Claudia Lopez listened carefully and gave opinions suggestions on key issues of concern. Besides, the two sides also exchanged views on engineering technology, economic development and post-epidemic infrastructure rehabilitation plan.
Claudia Lopez stressed that the Bogota Metro Project is of great significance for the municipal planning and national development of Colombia, so the municipal government will fully support the project. She pointed out that the Bogota Metro Line 1 Project will be an all-win project that will not only make life easier for citizens, but also provide opportunities for local enterprises to learn and gain experience from the project. At the same time, she also stressed the importance of environmental protection in the implementation and construction of the project.
Due to the impact of the COVID-19, the meeting was conducted both offline and online. At the main meeting place, the attendees used masks in the whole process, and strictly observed the biosafety protection regulations of the municipal government. At the meeting, the attendees communicated on the impact of the epidemic and solutions. In terms of travel difficulties and delayed construction period, Claudia Lopez said she would fully coordinate and provide support to ensure the early arrival at the site of the key personnel of the project and project construction permit application process, and appointed people in charge of the municipal government agencies to provide strong support for the metro project to shorten the approval duration, approve the construction permit at night, and grant the special approval for the construction site along the project.
Claudia Lopez said the epidemic is a crisis, a challenge and also an opportunity to transform Bogota. The municipal government will invest more than USD 20 billion in infrastructure improvement through the economic development and rehabilitation plan of the current government. The Bogota Metro Line 1 is the most important in the whole revitalization plan, which will help Bogota to seek opportunities for opening up and development from the closed and traditional environment.
The meeting lasted more than two hours. At the end of the meeting, Claudia Lopez said, Bogota Metro Project carries over-60-year’s expectations of people in the capital. The bidding and construction will experience term of office of three mayors. She will make a good start for the implementation of the Metro Project during her term of office, ensuring the financing closure and smooth implementation and laying a good foundation for the overall completion of the project. The municipal government and relevant public institutions will provide various support for the implementation of the project.
This meeting deepened the understanding of all parties concerned about the Metro Project’s contribution to urban development, enhanced the efforts to overcome the current difficulties, clarified the responsibilities of all parties, and enabled Bogota Metro Line 1 Project to receive more attention and support. The Metro will not only be the first metro in the capital of Colombia, but also serve as a card for Chinese enterprises in the Americas, promoting cross-cultural exchanges and becoming a witness to the friendship between the two countries.