The loan will be made through the International Bank for Development and Reconstruction, a branch of the World Bank set up to reduce poverty in middle-growth countries by promoting sustainable development.

The total cost of the project is expected to be $US 1.68bn with the municipal government funding half of the project and the remainder being sourced through international financial institutions. The European Investment Bank (EIB) is providing $US 259m, while the Inter-American Development Bank will and the Andean Development Corporation (CAF) will each contribute $US 200m.

The 23km Line 1 will run almost entirely underground from Quitumbe to El Labrador with 15 stations. A fleet of 18 six-car trains will be required, each with capacity for up to 1270 passengers based on six standing passengers per square metre. The total value of the rolling stock contract is expected to be around $US 193m, including track maintenance vehicles and depot equipment.

Electrification will be 1500kV dc with rigid overhead catenary and the line will be manually operated with ATP/ATO.

The average operating speed will be 37km/h and the journey time of around 35 minutes between the two termini. Ridership is expected to be around 369,000 passengers per day in the first year of operation.