June 28, 2016

Maryland Purple Line reaches financial close

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CAF will supply 26 LRVs for the new line. CAF will supply 26 LRVs for the new line.

MARYLAND Department of Transportation (MDOT), Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) and Purple Line Transit Partners, have signed the final financial documents for a $US 5.6bn PPP contract to design, build, finance, operate and maintain the 26km light rail Purple Line north of Washington DC.

Purple Line Transit Partners comprises Meridiam as a 70% equity provider, with Fluor Enterprises and Star America each providing 15% of the equity. Meridiam is an investor and asset manager specialising in public and community infrastructure. Fluor Construction has formed a construction joint venture to build the line with Lane and Traylor Brothers, while a consortium of CAF USA, Fluor and Alternate Concepts will operate and maintain the line.

CAF USA holds a 20% stake in the operations and maintenance consortium and will supply a fleet of 26 LRVs worth around $US 200m for the project.

Purple Line Transit Partners has secured all its financing for the project, including an $US 875m Transportation Infrastructure Finance Innovation Act loan from the US Department of Transportation; $313m in private activity bonds issued by the Maryland Economic Development Corporation and $138m from the partners' own private equity.

The 26km east-west Purple Line will run from Bethesda to New Carrollton serving suburbs inside the Capital Beltway north of Washington DC. The 21-station line will connect four branches of the Washington Metro, three commuter rail lines, plus Amtrak's Northeast Corridor, and will have 21 stations. The line will have a mixture of dedicated rights-of-way and street running. Passenger services are due to begin operating in early 2022.


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