Jerusalem's light rail system will undergo a $2-billion expansion, its first in nearly a decade. Israel's Finance and Transport Ministries, along with city officials, have have issued a prequalifying tender for the new Green Line. The project is planned as a public-private partnership, similar to other projects currently underway in Israel.
The proposed 18-kilometer line will have 33 stations along the route that will run from Mount Scopus in the north to the Gilo neighborhood in the south, with extensions to other neighborhoods. Work is not expected to begin before 2019.
The plan includes a new depot that will handle maintenance of cars from the new line and the existing Red Line. The Finance Ministry has also included a buyback option in the agreement for the new line that would enable the Israeli government to acquire the existing line and enable the winner of the new tender to operate both lines.
The Israeli Transport Ministry estimates that ridership on the two lines along with a third Blue Line, currently in the initial planning stages, will reach 350,000 passengers a day.
Meanwhile, the Finance Ministry is continuing its talks with Citipass, the operator of the Red Line, for north-south extensions that would add 13.9 km to the 36.2 km already in operation.