French firm RATP Dev has renewed its contract to operate and maintain the Casa Tramway in Morocco for 12 years.
The new contract begins on 13 December 2017, the company said in a statement.
It entails the operation, maintenance and development of four new tramway lines, including two whose civil works package is expected to be tendered soon and completed in 2022, and two modern bus lines, which are under study.
The firms subsidiary Casa Tram has been operating the first line of the tramway since 2012.
Line 2 of the Casa Tramway is under construction and is expected to be completed in October 2018.
The new contract includes several initiatives to ensure an optimised service. They include the installation of a data innovation centre in Casablanca as well as the implementation of a recruitment and training program led by RATP Dev in partnership with local authorities and the relevant Moroccan organisations.
In July, Casablanca Transport received bids for the rolling stock package of lines 3 and 4 of the Casa Tramway.
Companies that have submitted an offer are:
- Alstom Transport (France)
- Bombardier CAS (Canada)
- CRRC Zhuzhou Locomotive (China)
- Skoda Transportation (Czech Republic)
It is understood that the evaluation of the technical offers is under way.
The contract is expected to be awarded in December.
Casa Transports also expects to launch the tenders for the civil works and systems for the two new lines before end of 2017.
Preparatory works, which include underground networks, began in April and are expected to be completed in October 2018, when construction of the two lines is expected to commence.
The preliminary studies are still ongoing and are expected to be completed also by December.
The two lines will require an investment of MD8.4bn ($850m).
The Moroccan state as well as the regional and municipal governments of Casablanca will supply funding for 60 per cent of the project. Guaranteed loans will be utilised for the remaining 40 per cent of the budget.
MEED understads RATP Dev, along with Keolis, also of France, and Ansaldo /Hitachi, are the frontrunners for the O&M contract for the $23bn Riyadh Metro.