The tenders will comprise two contracts divided between conventional rail and tram-train services, which combined represent roughly a third of Pays de la Loire’s total Aléop rail network.

This includes the operation of:

  • tram-train services between Nantes and Nord-sur-Endre, Châteaubriant and Clisson, and
  • South Loire regional services radiating from Nantes to Pornic, Saint-Gilles-Croix-de-Vie, La Roche-sur-Yon, Les Sables-d'Olonne, La Rochelle, Cholet and Angers.

Bidding is planned to open in July 2021, with contracts awarded in the second half of 2022. The winning bidder will begin operating the routes no later than December 2023.

The regional government hopes that by opening bidding up to competition, public transport services will achieve a significant drop in the average cost of service and increase the frequency and quality of services on the network.