Friends of Latin American Railways

News Brazil

03.10.2017

São Paulo – Campinas – Americana

Experts from the World Bank have, along with their counterparts from the São Paulo state Ministry for Transport, visited the 135 km long railway line São Paulo – Campinas – Americana in order to evaluate opportunities and details for a PPP scheme which contemplates the introduction of regional passenger trains. São Paulo state has already released plots of land parallel to the existing freight railway line to make them available for the construction of a double-track line. These new tracks will allow for a maximum speed of 160 km/h. There will be 9 stations along the route including the suburban railway stations of São Paulo Luz, Barra Funda and Jundiaí. An option is to build the 30 km long section between Campinas and Americana as a single-track line. Overall project cost is expected to be in the region of BRR 5 to 5.4 bn.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Metrô Teresina

Metrô Teresina and Piauí state have ordered the new railcars at Bom Sinal which will consume about half of the available funding. The rest of it will be used to rehabilitate sections of the current railway line and some stations; and the three Ganz-Mávag trains will once more be fully refurbished. The Piauí government has decided to introduce regional trains with the Ganz-Mávag trains on the 41 km-long line Teresina – Altos. On the other hand, the project of a rail link to Timón has been shelved as the neighbour state of Maranhão shows little interest.
(Source: Cidadeverde.com)

Trem do Cariri Juázeiro do Norte – Crato

The Trem do Cariri from Juázeiro do Norte to Crato has resumed operations after a disruption of over 7 months. Trains run Monday to Friday between 0600 and 1900 hours, Saturday 0600 and 1400.

(Source: Município de Crato; G1Ceará)

Metrô de Sobral

The Metrô de Sobral has eventually introduced the final timetable. Trains operate on both lines Monday to Saturday between the hours of 0500 and 2300. Standard fares have been reduced from BRR 3.00 to BRR 1.00 after Ceará state was able to grant the respective subsidies. Concession fares sank from BRR 1.50 to BRR 0.50.
(Source: Município de Crato; G1Ceará)

Metrô Belo Horizonte

Metrô Belo Horizonte has extended trains from 4 to 8 carriages during peak traffic periods in order to better meet heavy demand. As a trial, trains operate until midnight; and if there is a good uptake of this offer it should become permanent.
(Source: CBTU)

Maceió

The extension of Maceió's suburban railway line to the coast, currently under construction, is nearing completion. The new terminus station of Jaraguá is almost ready, and the surroundings of that former harbour station have been redeveloped. Bom Parto and Mercado stations have been fully refurbished. Authorities have commissioned signalling at level crossings on the section between the Central station and Jaraguá, and test runs will commence at the end of 2017. Train service is expected to start during 2018.
(Source: Alagoas24horas)

Maceió – Lourenço de Albuquerque

Heavy rainfall between June and September caused a number of disruptions on the existing line Maceió – Lourenço de Albuquerque, but train services resumed after a just a few days on every of those occasions.
(Source: Alagoas24horas)

Metrô de Salvador

Metrô de Salvador opened a further section of line on 11 September 2017, comprising the stations of Flamboyant, Tamburugy, Bairro da Paz and Mussurunga. With this, network length increased to 29 kilometres with 19 stations. In addition, a new bus station has been built at Mussurunga to integrate bus connections.
(Source: G1 Bahía)

Cataguases – Recreio – Tres Rios

The closed railway workshops of Recreio (Minas Gerais) have received a new lease of life with the help of the local authorities, and refurbishement of some passenger carriages began. The carriages stem from the former Estrada de Ferro Vitória a Minas sets that have been replaced with new coaches; they were in good condition. Railway operator VLI contributes with overhauled diesel locomotives. All this will allow operation of tourist trains on the metre-gauge line Cataguases – Recreio – Tres Rios. There is currently no traffic on that line, but local administrations along the line are preserving the tracks in their jurisdictions. The municipality of Recreio – a town of 12'000 inhabitants – undertakes all to preserve rail tracks using the city streets. There is a variety of projects, one of them is called „Trem Azul“ (i.e. Blue Train), and for the first time, a tourist train will cross the border between two federal states, from Minas Gerais to Rio de Janeiro. A key player in this scheme is the Amigos do Trem NGO.
(Source: ONG Amigos do Trem)

07.07.2017

Transnordestina

In August 2017, authorities will take thorough inventory of the Transnordestina railway project and assess its economic efficiency. Due to lack of funding, construction works have stopped some time ago. The entire workforce employed was made redundant during 2015 and 2016, and a part of the wages is still due to be paid. It was originally planned to have the railway ready for service in 2010. Up to date, about one third of the 1720 km long system linking the ports of Pecém (Ceará) and Suape (Pernambuco) with Eliseu Martins (Piauí) is complete and could be operational. On a further third, works have progressed to a stage where track laying can start, but the remaining 35% are at an initial stage with not even earthworks having started on some sections. As the completed sections are located inland and are therefore totally isolated, they can't be used for revenue freight traffic.
Depending of the outcome of the study, either a firm will be appointed to assist CSN in completing construction work – so far only the Chinese CCCC has shown any interest – or alternatively, all currently involved parties could be paid off and the entire work be re-advertised. According to current calculations, some BRR 3bn are required to conclude the project.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Metrô Teresina

Metrô Teresina has finally been allocated funding to the tune of BRR 92m to upgrade the system. Although this would be sufficient to buy 6 new diesel railcars, the government of Piauí state has advertised for the acquisition of only 3 trains. The reason for this is that the funds will also be used for urgent repair and rehabilitation work on the infrastructure (track, level crossings and stations).
Replacement of the currently operating Ganz-Mávag trains has become an urgent matter. The trains started their life cycle 1973 in the Rio Grande do Sul state and were transferred to Teresina in 1989. Although they have been refurbished on several occasions, their condition is now worrying. Early in 2017 a train even derailed for mechanical reasons. In the past, there were plans to enhance urban traffic with new trains while the Ganz-Mávag trains would take over services to the surroundings (Altos, Timón and other cities), but this has now fallen by the wayside.
(Source: Cidadeverde.com)

Cuiabá

After a court of justice has confirmed that completion of the Cuiabá tramway project is sensible and economically viable, the government of Mato Grosso state has allocated BRR 922m towards the project which should allow to conclude the works within 24 months. An other court decision declared all compulsory purchase orders as valid, and appeals against the construction have been ruled out. The matter has become very urgent because both the City of Cuiabá and Mato Grosso state have to spend BRR 36m annually in order to pay for guarding the construction site, maintenance of trains which are sitting at the Várzea Grande depot since 2 years, and for wages of the already hired staff. The court has also confirmed investigations which proved that abandonment of the project and demolition of the infrastructure would cost almost triple the amount which is needed to complete the tramway. Furthermore, it has been emphasised that despite all the hassle, the Cuiabá tramway would still be some 30% cheaper upon commencement of service than the one in Rio de Janeiro.
(Source: Governo de Mato Grosso)

Crato - Juázeiro do Norte

In December 2016, the regional railway Metrô do Cariri which links Crato and Juázeiro do Norte closed to traffic temporarily, as about halfway along the line a road overbridge was being built across it. The bridge has been completed within the set timescales until February, but despite announcements made by the operator Metrofor, train operations haven't resumed as yet, a fact which causes quite some irritation and annoyance in the two cities affected. No information is available from Metrofor about the future of this rail link.
(Source: Município de Crato; G1Ceará)

31.12.2016

São Paulo – Argentinien

Freight operator Rumo (formerly known as ALL Logística) has announced that they will cease to serve the Customs facilities at Santana do Livramento and Uruguaiana, which would effectively mean the end of international freight traffic. Various freight customers who ship a total of over 25'000 containers per year via the São Paulo – Argentina corridor have lodged a protest with the National Authority for Land Transport (ANTT). As the public administration is in an ongoing process of downsizing, ANTT are not in a position to intervene in favor of re-opening those Customs facilities.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Old Rolling Stock

ANTT, the National Authority for Land Transport, have issued a resolution which authorises the private freight railway concessionaires to scrap all vehicles that are surplus to requirements. Most of this stock had been taken over from the former state railway RFFSA. Any funds generated by this sale are supposed to be used for the rehabilitation of track infrastructure.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

20.12.2016

Transnordestina

The government wants to terminate construction works on the Transnordestina project. Thus it will invest several BRR 430million over the next two years. The Transnordestina comprises 1728 km of new broad gauge lines from the ports of Suape (near Recife) and Pecém (near Fortaleza) to Eliseu Martins in Piauí state. Great sections of lines are complete and on others construction has even not started.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-7)

Salvador

The decision has been taken to convert the suburban train from Salvador Calçada station to Paripe into a modern tramway line with 21 intermediate stops.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-7)

São Paulo

The government of São Paulo state took the decision to call for tenders for a public-private partnership to finance the project of regional intercity train lines around São Paulo to Campinas, Mogi das Cruzes and beyound, Sorocaba and Santos, during 2017. The state alone can’t finance the entire project. The first line may open over a distance of 135 km from São Paulo to Jundiaí, Campinas and Americana.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-7)

João Pessoa

In December 2016 the João Pessoa suburban train operator CBTU got the fourth of the eight new DMU built by Bom Sinal. During 2017 and early 2018 the remaining 4 may also been delivered. Until 2018 the entire 30 km long line from Santa Rita through João Pessoa to Cabdelo will be completely refurbished, including all 12 stations and construction of 4 additional stations and double track sections to increase frequencies from about every 60 min. to about every 20 mins.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-7)

08.10.2016

Extension of Tramway at Rio de Janeiro

During November 2016 a further section of the modern Tramway at Rio de Janeiro will commence operation between Praça Quinze and Praça da República. Tracks are already completed, just some works on the stations must be done.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-6)

Transnordestina

The Transnordestina Railway from Suape and Pecém to Salgueiro and Eliseu Martins may now be completed by the state since the private consortium isn’t able to do it without further public funds. The federal government wants first to complete the line between Suape and Eliseu martins, followed by the line to Pecém. The original project was established to complete the entire railway in 2010. Currently only 55% of the tracks have been laid.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-6)

Amapá Railway

Amapá state took over the Amapá Railway to rehabilitate it with public funds, later the railway may be operated by a private concessionaire.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-6)

30.09.2016

Politics

The new federal government of president Michel Temer has announced that it will opt exclusively for privately financed projects to expand the railway network. This appears to provide higher profits to the private sector. This affects the following projects:
Extension of the Norte-Sul beyond Anápolis southbound to Estrela d'Oeste in São Paulo state, where construction is at a very advanced stage. About 90% of the 700 km have already been completed.
Construction of a new coast railway line from Rio de Janeiro via Campos to Vitória. About 30% of the old line between Campos and Visconde do Itapemirim should be reused for this, but the cities of Macaé and Campos will be avoided with new alignments. After ANTT lifted the bann for building new level crossings and the minimum radius was reduced from 500 to 350 metres, construction costs for this about 600 km long line could be reduced from nearly BRR 8 billion to under BRR 6 billion.
Construction of the Ferrogrão railway (grain railway) from Miritituba on the Rio Tapajós in eastern Amazonia to Sinop in the centre of Mato Grosso state with a length of 933 km. According to budget (2016 figures) this should cost some BRR 12,6 billion.
In addition to this, the core lines through São Paulo state will be reconcessioned, and the new operator will be obliged to refurbish the lines from Santos to Santa Fé do Sul, Panorama and Barretos, to build avoiding lines around densely populated areas and to resume operations on the currently closed lines Baurú – Panorama and Araraquara – Barretos.

(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Statistics

A new list of the operational railway network of Brazil reveals that the freight train concessionaires ceased to operate numerous lines (as of 2015/2016).
Transnordestina lists the lines Recife – Itabaiana – João Pessoa – Natal – Macau, Recife – Salgueiro and Recife – Lourenço de Albuquerque – Colegio as „out of use“, and it has to be stressed that track conditions make it impossible to use the sections João Pessoa (actually Paula Cavalcanti) to Parnamirim, Ceará Mirim to Macau and Recife to Salgueiro. The line between Recife and Colegio has some sections that were destroyed by flooding with repair/rehabilitation work still pending.
On the network of Ferrovia Centro Atlântico/VLI, the following lines are out of use: Magé (near Rio de Janeiro) – Campos – Recreio, Tres Rios – Recreio – Cataguazes – Ponte Nova – Miguel Burnier, Corinto – Pirapora, Barra Mansa – Angra dos Reis and Aracajú – Colegio, while no trains have been running between São Francisco (Bahía) and Aracajú at least since 2013.
After the amalgamation of ALL and Rumo and the subsequent rebranding to „Rumo“, a veritable „demolition“ took place on the southern network. During the mentioned period or part of it, the following lines included in the concession weren't operated: Baurú – Indubrasil – Corumbá, Baurú – Panorama, Araraquara – Colômbia, Riberão Preto – São Sebastião do Paraíso, Santos – Juquiá, Ourinhos – Jaguariaíva, Mafra – Porto União da Vitória – Passo Fundo, Dilermando de Aguiar – Santiago – São Borja, Santiago – Santo Angelo and Cacequí – Santana do Livramento.
Various statistics confirm that never since nationalisation and the following reprivatisation there have been so few lines in operation.

(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Tonnages of Rail Fright

Despite a challenging economic climate, rail freight tonnages have increased by almost 8% during the first six months of 2016. Only the Ferrovía Teresa Cristina and Rumo Sul (lines south of São Paulo) networks registered a fall of about 11% each.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária and ANTT)

Refurbishment flat Wagons

VLI had 214 flat wagons refurbished at a cost of about BRR 6 mio. These will be used to haul Eucalyptus wood from Sete Lagoas in Minas Gerais state to Aracruz in Espírito Santo state for further processing. During the next 5 years, some 2 mio cubic metres of timber will be carried over this 700 km long line, which will remove around 100 daily lorry journeys from the roads connecting the two federal states.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Parangaba - Mucuripe 

Test runs between Montese and Borges de Melo stations on the modern urban railway Parangaba - Mucuripe started on 27 September 2016. Metrofor (Fortaleza) have completed this 3,6 km long stretch, and the test runs will also serve crew training purposes for both driving and maintenance staff. During a few hours, the runs are open to the public in order to get local residents used to the new means of transport. The line with an overall length of 13,4 km is still under construcion. Operations were originally expected to start in 2013, but a huge number of appeals from local landowners ensuing in substantially increased administrative costs brought the construction work to a standstill in 2013. Only after new funding could be sourced and the land issues solved, work was resumed in mid-2015. The government of Ceará state expects completion of the entire line during 2018.
(Source: ANPTrilhos)

Detran - Rodoviária

On 30 September 2016, Metro Salvador started trial runs on the 1,5 km long section Detran - Rodoviária. According to Metro Salvador, construction of line 2 is following the set timescales. Work on this started in February 2015, and at the initially mentioned date, 69% of the entire line had been completed. It is expected to open the line to the airport in the second half of 2017.
(Source: Folha Geral Bahia)

Suburban Traffic

In mid-August, City Minister Bruno Araújo announced at Recife that funding for a further CBTU suburban line has been approved. This will be an 11 km long line from Ponte dos Carvalhos via Ipojuca to Suape, double-track and with diesel traction. Trains will connect at Cajueiro Seco with the existing electric Metro from Recife and the diesel-operated line from Curado and then use the line to Cabo until Ponte dos Carvalhos. Suape is the most important port of Pernambuco state with more than 100 big firms in the harbour estate. Bus lines in the area are saturated and unable to cope with demand for quite some time already. Bom Sinal will probably supply diesel multiple units for this line. Construction of the second line from Cajueiro Seco to Cabo has already started on some sections, and this simplifies implementation of the project. South of Ponte dos Carvalhos, the alignment of the currently closed and partly dismantled metre-gauge line will be used which will shorten construction time to 2 years. The metre-gauge line to Suape was closed in light of the envisaged broad-gauge Transnordestina railway. As the opening of the Transnordestina is a long way off, the new suburban railway line may be used during night time for freight traffic in order to move goods from shippers in Recife to the port and vice-versa. During an initial period, trains will run every 12 minutes during the week, allowing to carry at least 3000 passengers per hour and direction.
(Source: Fahrplancenter News; CBTU)

Sunday Operations at CBTU

CBTU Natal introduced Sunday operations in Mid-2016. This decision was taken after some Sunday runs during 2014 and 2015 proved to be very popular among users. Between Natal and Ceará Mirim there are now 6 round-trips Monday to Friday, 4 on Saturdays and 2 on Sundays. On the south line Natal - Parnamirim there are 7 round-trips Monday to Friday (with an additional round-trip on Wednesdays), 4 on Saturdays and 2 on Sundays. All services are now operated by modern Diesel units from Bom Sinal.
(Source: CBTU)

New Tourist Railways

A few new tourist railway projects have good chances to become reality within the next 12 to 18 months, and they include not just short-haul journeys.
Regular railcar traffic between Miguel Pereira and Governador Portela will begin before the end of 2016. This has been delayed by some snagging work after spot checks by the land transport authority ANTT detected some shortcomings. Several level crossing require better signalisation, there is one spot where intruders occupy the track, and there are a few minor works to be carried out at both stations. Local authorities are supervising the works closely in order to get the operating licence as soon as possible. The line has been regauged from 1000 mm to 1600 mm, and a Budd diesel railcar will operate.
There is significant progress on the project of operating one or even more trains on the 180 km long route from Cataguazes (Minas Gerais) via Leopoldina, Recreio, Volta Grande and Além Paraíba to Três Rios (Rio de Janeiro). This line has been used until recently by VLI for the transport of bauxite and is in operational condition. Only a few repairs to the infrastructure are required. The NGO ?Amigos do Trem? has been designated by ANTT as operator of the line; they have support from VLI and the state infrastructure authority DNIT. Two diesel locomotives were ceded to the operator by DNIT, while VLI will look after these and train driving staff. Six passenger carriages were also ceded by DNIT. The two locomotives were fully overhauled and rehabilitated during August and September 2016 in the VLI workshops at Lavras. Amigos do Trem evisage operating the first trains around the turn of 2016/2017. It appears that trains will be operated on sections of the line, the talk is about one train between Três Rios and Além Paraíba while another train would operate from Cataguazes. All municipalities along the lines are fully committed to the endeavour.
In Lavras (South of Minas Gerais state), the railway operator Circuito Ferroviario Vale Verde (CFVV) has been established. The project is supported by the city of Lavras, some other municipalities and VLI. CFVV received five diesel locomotives, three passenger carriages and a railcar. Tourist trains are to run over 122 km from Lavras to Tres Corações, a line which sees freight trains from VLI on weekdays and is, therefore, in a fairly good condition. Just a few passenger facilities at stations need rehabilitated; this had been done at Lavras in 2012 when some test runs operated. As soon as the track access agreement with VLI is signed, CFVV hopes to receive authorisation from ANTT for regular train operations during the first months of 2017.
A good distance further south, Serra Verde Express Ltda. is currently working with Rumo in order to get track access for regular trains between Curitiba and Lapa. A few special runs took place in the past over this 90 km long line stretching west from Curitiba via Engenheiro Bley. DNIT has ceded the Lapa railway station to the municipality, who are currently refurbishing the station with the help of a resident army battalion for the amount of BRR 250'000. Serra Verde Express possess enough vehicles to cover services on this line.
In the city of Belo Horizonte there are two widely progressed projects, both of them in cooperation with Amigos do Trem. In this case, the freight train concessionaire still opposes the use of its lines, but the city of Belo Horizonte has indicated that they are willing to cover legal fees should there be no agreement with MRS Logística.

(Source: Revista Ferroviária, Fahrplancenter News)

21.08.2016

Cajueiro Seco - Port of Suape

Despite austerity measures CBTU Recife got authorization to build a new 11 km long suburban railway from Cajueiro Seco to the Port of Suape. The new double track line will follow an existing alignment and connect to the Southern Metro Line at Cajueiro Seco. The line will operate with diesel multiple units.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-5)

15.06.2016

Baurú – Corumbá

ALL/Rumo ceased freight traffic between Baurú and Corumbá (1315 km) and wants to keep the line closed even against protests from the government. This measure brought also Trem do Pantanal to a halt.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-4)

Japerí - Barra do Piraí

A local initiative from Rio de Janeiro wants to make pressure to reinstate the passenger train Barrinha Japerí – Barra do Piraí. This train would connect various towns along this line, which are relatively isolated without it. Unfortunately several former atempts to re-establish this train, which was suspended in 1996, failed.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-4)

31.03.2016

São Paulo

The new suburban railway line from São Paulo to the international airport Guarulhos will be open for traffic in 2019, suffering a delay of three years, according to a press release of the São Paulo government. Work initially started in 2013, but it was stopped in September of that same year because an additional lane widening the Ayrton Senna motorway was built at short notice. This, in turn, triggered wide-ranging changes to the design of the railway bridge across that motorway. With this, some 8.8 km of the 12,2 km-long double-track electrified broad gauge line (1600 mm/5ft 3') will run on viaducts, as also the Dutra motorway and the Rio Tieté have to be bridged. Also, federal government withheld a huge part of its funding because not all the land required could be acquired or vested until the end of 2015. Some work has, however, been carried out such as station improvements along the CPTM suburban line 12 from São Paulo Brás to the future junction at Engenheiro Goulart; and the detail planning and design work for Guarulhos-Cecap and Aeroporto stations has been finished. Eight 8-piece multiple units will be ordered for the new line. Some of the work carried out so far was funded by the Bank for Social Development BNDES. Funding from federal government is secure as this was pledged before the crisis and hasn't been cut. The delay in designing and building the line will increase the cost by at least BRR 51,2 mio to a total of about BRR 1,9 billion.
(Source: Veja.com, Revista Ferroviária)

São José do Rio Preto

The national authority for infrastructure DNIT has submitted plans to the city of São José do Rio Preto which outline
three options for the construction of avoiding lines skirting the city in order to close the existing railway line through the town centre. This line sees long and heavy freight trains daily. A few years ago a major accident occurred when a freight train derailed, crushing houses along the track and causing fatalities. The DNIT and the city are now assessing the plans. Funding would be provided by the federal government. A number of manned level crossings will also disappear once the avoiding line is built. The only negative point is that the tourist railcar to Engenheiro Schmitt would have its fate sealed when the railway line through the town is removed.
(Source: G1)

Brasília – Goiânia

The project to build a modern regional railway linking Brasília, Anápolis and Goiânia is news again. After a number of changes in its design, it has been trimmed down to a passenger-only railway but it is, however, intended that the railcars will also carry parcels. An integration of the planned regional railway Brasília – Luziânia into this project has been rejected; those trains will use the existing metre-gauge line as per the original design. Further branch lines were rejected, too, which brought the overall price tag for the Brasília – Goiânia line down to BRR 4,5 billion from over BRR 9 billion originally. Federal authorities have approved a split of cost in the following manner: 5% each of the three cities served, private investors (some 50%), federal government and Goiás state. Construction will be advertised during 2016.
(Source: Fahrplancenter News, Revista Ferroviária)

Estrada de Ferro do Amapá

Appeals from Zamin, the last concessionaire of the Estrada de Ferro do Amapá have repeatedly blocked attempts from the Amapá state to take over operation of passenger traffic on the Porto Santana – Serra do Návio line. There are reports that the lack of passenger trains is stirring civil unrest in settlements along the line. Zamin failed to comply with the terms of the concession contract and ceased operations in 2014 without previous notice.
(Source: Governo de Amapá)

High costs of road transport

As road haulage comes at a very high cost to the farming sector of the Santa Catarina state economy, the government has commissioned a study to assess whether transport of animal feed from their production centres in the Tocantins and Goiás states to Santa Catarina would be more economical by rail mode, as opposed to road transport. Initial estimates suggest a potential to reduce the transport cost per metric ton of grain by at least 10 to 15 Reais if the long haul was done by rail and only the distribution within Santa Catarina went on lorries. The proposed route would be Anápolis – Campinas – Mairink – Sorocaba – Iperó – Uvaranas – Engenheiro Bley – Mafra (some 2300 km) and then reach places along the Mafra – Lages and the Mafra - Porto União da Vitória lines. The study will also examine whether the freight train operators FCA and ALL have the capacities to handle this flow of freight and whether some sections of the route (Iperó – Uvaranas in particular) can bear with an additional tonnage of up to 3 Mio tons per year. If it is viable to move the freight by rail this would reduce the price of chicken meat for export up to 15%, while meat producers in Santa Catarina still would benefit from a higher income.
(Source: Canal Rural)

Urban Railway Cuiabá – Várzea Grande

Construction work on the urban railway Cuiabá – Várzea Grande was stopped in the second half-year 2015. Track alignment is about 35% complete, rails have been laid on 10% of the line, and all rolling stock is in situ. Mato Grosso state apparently had second thoughts as to whether the railway should be completed at all. An independent study by a private consultant has, however, demonstrated that completion would eventually pay out, as already BRR 1,066 billion have been spent. Most of the preliminary work like re-location of utilities (fresh water, sewage) has progressed, albeit slowly, and is nearing completion. To abandon the work wouldn't make sense as this would trigger a cost of BRR 532 million, whereas completion of the system would only cost 70 Mio more. Therefore, construction work in its entirety will resume before mid-2016.
(Source: Portal do Governo de Mato Grosso)

Tramway Fortaleza

Work on the new tramway line of Fortaleza which is to link the south metro line at Parangaba with the eastern suburb of Mucuripe and serving the 22 intermediate communities (an area accommodating some 500'000 people) had been started on time, but appeals, issues with land acquisition and the collapse of one of the contractors involved led to a stoppage of the works between mid-2014 and mid-2015. Construction was then resumed in July 2015 between the stations Iate and Borges de Melo, followed by the section Borges de Melo to Parangaba. The current economy crisis has prompted the infrastructure authority of Ceará state to re-activate the remaining sections to be built in order to create employment opportunities. All land acquisition matters have been solved in February 2016, and this cleared the way to complete construction of the tramway by the end of 2017.
(Source: G1 Ceará)

Tramway Rio de Janeiro

After an intensive period of testing, the first modern tramway line of Rio de Janeiro will begin operations during April 2016. This line links Rodoviária (Bus terminal) Novo Rio and the city airport Santos Dumont and will call at 18 stops en route, among others at the central railway station (also known as Dom Pedro II). The second stage of the system will open during the second half-year of 2016 and connect the ferryport. The line will operate 24/7, and a vast number of bus lines will be re-routed in order to connect with the new tram. The first 28 drivers have already completed their training on the 32 tram units, and training for another 40 drivers will start in March 2016. All the work is progressing at good pace as funding for the entire project, with the participation of the federal government, the city and private companies, had for once been organised very well and all bills during the construction period were paid on time. Total spend ascends to BRR 1,157 billlion, with funding from the PAC (Programme for acceleration of growth) to the tune of BRR 532 million. Despite the economic crisis, this money is currently available as it has been ringfenced since 2013.
(Source: G1 Rio de Janeiro, Revista Ferroviária)

Metro Rio de Janeiro

On 07 March 2016, the national bank for social development (BNDES) released another tranche of BRR 200 million for the construction of Rio de Janeiro's metro line 4. Work between Barra and Zona Sul is continuing at high pitch and it is hoped that this section of line with 5 stations can be completed until the Olympic Games. The remaining spend is about BRR 900 million, of which BRR 489 million will come from Rio de Janeiro state and the remainder from the federal government. Tracks are expected to be laid during May 2016, along with testing of electric systems. Test runs are due in June while stations will be completed; further test runs with passengers are to take place in July so that the timetable proposed for the olympic games can start immediately. Stations are: São Conrado, Jardim Oceânico, Jardim de Alá, Antero de Quental and Nossa Senhora da Paz.
Contrary to planning, the section to Gávea station will not be completed until at least 2017 as funding has not yet been secured. The tunnel boring machine will, however, continue its work in Gávea direction.
(Source: O Globo)

20.02.2016

Ferdinando Laboreaux – Araçatuba – Birigui

The city of Araçatuba (São Paulo state) wants to invest BRR 5,9m for the creation of a steam-loco hauled tourist train on the 20,5 km long line between Ferdinando Laboreaux, Araçatuba and Birigui, a section of the metre-gauge Baurú-Corumbá main line. The first plan to rehabilitate a 10 km section towards Eng. Tavares on a closed branch line was scrapped due to the high costs. The rolling-stock is already there, but needs complete reconstruction.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-2)

„Metro“ Teresina

The urban railway of Teresina (also called Metro) is getting 2016 BRR217m from the federal government to finally reha-bilitate its infrastructure and to buy new rolling-stock to replace the 40 years old Ganz-Mávag trains. Piauí state will add a fur-ther BRR 11,45m towards this sum. This is the poorest urban railway in Brazil, waiting for some investment for many years.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-2)

Tramway Santa Teresa

One section of the historic Santa Teresa tramway at Rio de Janeiro is back in daily operation. New cars are running, they have been built according to the old ones. More sections will be put into service during the current year.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-2)

Tramway Santos

A first part of 6,5 km of the new Santos tramway commenced commercial operation.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-2)

10.01.2016

Main Station Barão de Mauá in Rio de Janeiro

The dilapidated former main station Barão de Mauá at Rio de Janeiro has been taken over by government organisations of the transport sector to stop further decay. Using the offices of the former station is also cheaper than the former ones at Copacabana. This is a further step to savings in the current economic crisis.
(Source: Volta o Trem 20-1)

31.12.2015

End of the line for Ferrovía da Integração Oeste-Leste (FIOL)?

The federal office for budget control noted in a study published in October 2015 that this line of 1500 km, connecting the port of Ilhéus and Figueirópolis in Tocantins state and currently under construction, would be uneconomical under the current circumstances. Also, construction of a new port at Ilhéus seems to be postponed for an undetermined time. However, construction of the section between Caetité (90 km west of Brumado on the Belo Horizonte – Salvador line) to Ilhéus with a length of about 500 km and currently 70% complete, will be finalised and become operational. At Ilhéus, the current port will be connected to this line. The section between Caetité and Barreiras, another 500 km long and about 50% complete, will be “frozen” at the current level; no tracks have been laid yet and only a few structures have been built. The last third from Barreiras to Figueirópolis has been fully surveyed, but only a few earthworks have started. It will remain untouched for an undetermined time. Current construction work is almost 2 years delayed, with an overspend of BRR 2,2 billion (from 4,3 to 6,5 billion Reais).
(Source: Various local newspapers)

Urban Railway Campina Grande

The city of Campina Grande in Paraíba state, in conjunction with CBTU and the government, is currently working on a project for a 15 km long urban railway, which will mostly use the alignment of the existing and underused metre-gauge line between the university hospital in the north and the Aluizio campus in the south of the city.
(Source: Tramways and Urban Transit)

Tramway Santa Teresa

The famous Santa Tereza tramway in Rio de Janeiro resumed its service on 27 July 2015 on a first, 1,7 km long section. New cars, built in Brazil and externally resembling the old cars, are running on newly laid tracks. The original cars have been preserved, but are currently withdrawn and will be retained for museum purposes. Trams depart Monday to Saturday every 20 minutes between 1100 and 1600 hrs., and during testing no fares will be charged. More sections of line will be re-opened as they become available for traffic after track re-laying.
(Source: Tramways and Urban Transit)

Miguel Pereira – Governador Portela

A consortium of railway associations, the municipality of Miguel Pereira and other official agencies are working feverishly on the rehabilitation of the 4,5 km long line from Miguel Pereria to Governador Portela and an extension of 9 km to the viaduct Paulo de Frontim. This section of the former metre-gauge line “Linha Auxiliar” (Japerí – Tres Rios) will see a gauge change from 1000 mm to 1600 mm (5 ft. 3 in.), however, all level crossings will get a third rail to enable metre-gauge gauge trains to pass in the future, should this be needed. For the tourist train, this won't be the case as a broad-gauge Budd railcar has already been refurbished at Juiz de Fora and brought to Miguel Pereira with a second railcar to follow. It is intended to rebuild the line in broad gauge until Vassouras or Paraíba do Sul and to operate a luxury tourist train using the coaches of the former Trem da Prata night train (it linked Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo in its day). Opening to traffic of the first section of line is expected to take place during 2016.
(Source: ONG Amigos do Trem)

25.11.2015

Bonocô, Salvador

November 13, 2015 Metro Salvador opened a new station, called Bonocô after a Construction period of 10 months.
(Source: Volta o Trem 19-9)

Guararema – Luís Carlos

Since October 16, 2015 a steam train runs over the broad gauge line Guararema – Luís Carlos in São Paulo state. The train runs twice per day on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays and it is especially popular with pupils and students.
(Source: Volta o Trem 19-9)

Railway Station Águas da Prata

The population of Águas da Prata (São Paulo state) was ashamed with the very rundown condition of the local railway station, which has no more been in use for 30 years. Just one freight train per day passes by today. 20 neighbors took now the initiative and they started to renovate the entire building, some are helping with materials, others are doing the job. It is not only painting, even structures have to repaired or replaced and they are working hard to present the refurbished station illuminated for Christmas.
(Source: Volta o Trem 19-9)

25.10.2015

Criciúma - Iaçara

October 19, 2015 saw the reimplantation of a local passenger train service between Criciúma and Iaçara after a gap of 45 years ! It’s one pair of trains running Monday to Friday evenings, operating on a trial base for 2 weeks, transporting students over the 10 km section of line. The train is formed of four coaches from the Museum train which operates normally from Tubarão and a diesel-locomotive. Since the first day of operation the train operated at its capacity level. If these two weeks will be successful, Santa Catarina state plans to introduce this service on a regular level as a regional passenger railway at a later time.
(Source: Volta o Trem 19-8)

22.09.2015

São Luiz - Parauapebas

September 14, 2015 EFC brought the new consist of 39 Romanian-built passenger coaches into operation between São Luiz and Parauapebas. The coaches have been built by Astra Vagoane.
(Source: Volta o Trem 19-7)

20.04.2015

CBTU Natal

CBTU Natal introduced, after many test runs, the first few new Bom Sinal-built railcars into regular use. One train on each line from Natal to Ceará Mirim and Natal to Parnamirim is now run with new railcars. Every month more railcars are arriving at Natal and during 2016 all services will run with the new vehi-cles. At the same time tracks and level-crossing are upgraded.
(Source: Volta o Trem 19-5)

Tourist trains in Brazil

On http://www.fahrplancenter.com/AIFFLABrasilienTurismo.html you can find a complete and updated list of all tourist train operations in Brazil.
(Source: Volta o Trem 19-5)

Zamin / Amapá Railway

The Amapá Railway is temporarily out of service due to financial issues with the concessionaire Zanim. Amapá state is about to take the railway over to guarantee the very important passenger service to the local population.
(Source: Volta o Trem 19-5)

31.03.2015

Avoiding Line around the City of Araraquara commissioned

On 20th February 2015, ANTT commissioned the new avoiding line around the city of Araraquara. This will allow to remove the intensive freight traffic coming from the north of São Paulo state and Mato Grosso state from the city centre. The new line has less curves and will slightly shorten the distance to Santa Fé do Sul, but will require trains to Barretos and Colômbia to reverse their direction of travel north of Araraquara in the future. Traffic will, however, only start once the two stations of Ouro (on the Itirapina – Colômbia line) and Tutóia (on the Araraquara – Sante Fé do Sul line) have been upgraded accordingly. Work at both stations is progressing on schedule.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

31.01.2015

Tramway/Light Rail System at Cuiabá

Construction of the modern tramway/light rail system at Cuiabá is again faltering. Only about half of the line Várzea Grande – Cuiabá is more or less complete. Particularly, there is major progress in the town of Várzea Grande, the station at the airport would be ready for service and there are long sections through town on which tracks have already been laid. The bridge across Cuiabá river is nearly complete. Things look quite different at Cuiabá, some sections appear to be ready for tracklaying, while on other sections earthworks are still ongoing. There are, however, some stretches where no work at all has been done, not even the utilities have been moved. Politicians from Cuiabá city are now calling for a referendum in the two municipalities with some 600'000 voters in order to determine whether construction should be continued or an express bus system be introduced instead. All interested parties agree that public transport must be improved, and those with a negative stance towards the referendum correctly highlight the amount of money already spent on the project. All materials (rails, overhead lines, vehicles etc.) are on site and have been paid. It is feared that the materials could only be sold at a loss, in case the Light Rail scheme would be cancelled.
(Source: Diário de Cuiabá)

Tramway in Rio de Janeiro

In Rio de Janeiro, the first 400 metres of tramway track were laid in the Rua General Luiz Mendes during March 2015. It is expected to lay some 200 to 400 metres of track per month. Utilities have been moved in most streets and the foundations prepared for tracklaying. Only in the very busy Avenida Rio Branco there is little progress so far, but work is expected to be complete by mid-2015. The first stretch of the tramway is scheduled to start operations in the first half of 2016.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

New Tramway Car für the Bonde de Santa Teresa

The first new tramway car for the Bonde de Santa Teresa (Santa Teresa tramway) in Rio de Janeiro was delivered by the manufacturer T'Trans and could be seen on test runs at the end of February 2015. The new vehicles are replicas which externally match the historical cars, but are fitted with modern technology. Delayed delivery of rails by the polish manufacturer is blamed for the fact that operations still haven't resumed.
(Source: Trem.org)

Freight Traffic on the Norte-Sul Railway

After many initial problems, freight traffic started on the Norte-Sul railway at the end of February 2015, although at modest level. Early in March, various new diesel locomotives were based along the line. These locomotives of the SD70ACe class, built by Progress Rail, are hauled by road from the manufacturing plant at Sete Lagoas to Anápolis and continue from there by rail to their operating bases. The first 4 out of a batch of 18 locomotives were transferred to Imperatriz, from where they will operate for the freight operator VLI.
(Source: Revista Ferrovária)

Gurupi (Tocantins) – Anápolis

The brasilian agency for land transport ANTT formally opened the Gurupi (Tocantins) – Anápolis section for general freight traffic on 18th February 2015. A temporary closure of that stretch of the Norte-Sul railway line had to be imposed because after opening in May 2014 some deficiencies on the track and drainages were spotted. All faults have since been rectified.
(Source: Revista Ferrovária)

20.01.2015

Barbacena

The NGO Amigos do Trem (Friends of the Train) completed refurbishment of the broad-gauge Budd railcar MH946005-7F built in the USA 1958. The railcar was brought to Barbacena with the help of MRS and will be used as the Trem das Rosas (Train of the Roses) on behalf of Barbacena municipality.
(Source: Volta o Trem 19-1)

11.01.2015

Avoiding line around Três Lagoas

On 08 December 2014, the new 12 kilometre-long avoiding line around the city of Três Lagoas was opened. The entire freight traffic from América Latina Logística/ALL from Baurú to Corumbá will use this line, and the numerous open level crossings within the urban area of Três Lagoas have disappeared.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

New Railway Museum opened

A small railway museum has been opened in the former railway station of Sabaúna on 29 November 2014. Sabaúna is part of the city of Mogi das Cruzes (13 km from the centre) and is located on the Rio de Janeiro – São Paulo railway line. Local trains called at that station until 1986.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

Santana do Livramento - Rio Grande do Sul

On 19 December 2014, two trains ran from Santana do Livramento to the station of Palomas and back over a stretch of 21 kilometres in the Rio Grande do Sul state of the line to Cacequi. The reason was the celebration of the 104th anniversary of the Santana do Livramento station, but served, at the same time, as test for a permanent tourist train on that section. The track infrastructure has been refurbished in recent years by the operator ALL and the Brazilian federal government in order to prepare the line for increased freight traffic to and from Uruguay which, however, hasn't materialised so far. ALL provided the locomotive for the special trains while the historic passenger carriages came from ABPF Santa Catarina, transferred by rail from Rio Negrinho via Lages and Santa Maria. Passenger turnout was very high.
A few months earlier, the same carriages, hauled by an ALL locomotive, ran as a special train on the Linha Tronco do Sul between Lages an Vacaria (a bit over 100 km) to celebrate the 45th anniversary of the line. While passenger trains ran on the line from Mafra to Lages until 1978, the section south of Lages has until today only been used by freight trains.
(Source: Revista Ferroviaria, Lages.sc.gov)

20.12.2014

Santana do Livramento - Palomas

For the first time after about 20 years a passenger train travelled between Santana do Livramento and Palomas a distance of 21 km on 19 December 2014. The two round-trips operated for the 104th anniversary of the station at Santana do Livramento and as test for a planned regular tourist operation over this line. Patronage was very high. The diesel-locomotive was from ALL, the coaches from ABPF and Giordani Turismo was responsible for marketing.
(Source: Volta o Trem 18-9)

Natal - Ceará Mirim

Since december 2, 2014 a Bom Sinal built railcar took over operation of one of the local trains between Natal and Ceará Mirim in Rio Grande do Norte. Every second month one more railcar may came into service on the Natal suburban network.
(Source: Volta o Trem 18-9)

João Pessoa

November 1, 2014 Bom Sinal delivered the first diesel-railcar to the CBTU João Pessoa suburban network and this will enter into service in January 2015, during 2015 a further 7 railcars will be delivered to João Pessoa.
(Source: Volta o Trem 18-9)

Metrô Sobral

Since end October 2014 the Metro Sobral (urban railway) operates trains Monday to Friday between 08.00 and 12.00 under trial operation, but open to the public for free rides.
(Source: Volta o Trem 18-9)

Poços de Caldas

The city of Poços de Caldas (Minas Gerais) got the permission to rebuild 9 km of the former railway towards Aguas da Prata to reintroduce the once very popular tourist train. For this purpose the Federal Transport Department donated several lots of rails to the city.
(Source: Volta o Trem 18-9)

Santos – São Vicente

While some sections of the new tramway between Santos and São Vicente are still under construction, trial services already operates on a section of the new line within São Vicente.
(Source: Volta o Trem 18-9)

24.10.2014

Sobral, Staat Ceará

October 22, 2014 the new Metro at Sobral, Ceará state initi-ated test operation. The Railway has two lines, one using a section of the existing freight Railway between Fortaleza and Teresina, the other was partially built on the alignment of the former railway to Camocim. Bom Sinal built DMU’s for this urban railway.
(Source: Volta o Trem 18-8)

10.10.2014

Twin Track Conversion of Estrada de Ferro Carajás EFC

Laying of double track on the Estrada de Ferro Carajás EFC of the Vale group is progressing rapidly. The state authority for land transport ANTT commissioned a significant number of completed sections and structures in the last week of September 2014. The project encompasses upgrading some 570 km of the 892 km long line to double-track standard, split in 48 different sections. Also, 55 existing passing loops will be modernised and extended, and 43 new bridges will be built, some of these to separate roads from railway tracks. Telecommunications, signalling and other equipment are also being upgraded to increase capacity of the line from 120 Mio tons per year to 230 Mio tons per year. This is a requirement once the new mines at Canaã dos Carajás are explored.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Reservations Luziânia - Brasília

Somewhat unexpectedly, the state authority for land transport ANTT appears to have reservations towards establishing regional train service between Brasília and Luziânia. The study is being delayed and is expected to be complete in March 2015 only. Then, the ANTT will decide whether this project will go forward or not. Some of the reservations seem to come from the freight train operator FCA who prefers to run their trains without having to respect a passenger timetable. On the other hand, bus operators are wary about this potential competitor and they feel prompted to increase the bus fleet from 765 to 1405 units. Such a step would also include the replacement of old vehicles dating back to 1988. The worry of ANTT is, however, that train travel times would not be attractive given the fact that the alignment of the railway line is somewhat longer than the road and allows for a maximum speed of 20 to 30 km per hour only (although this refers to heavy freight trains). Nevertheless, FCA currently undertakes to repair the track. Public opinion in the Luziânia and Valparaíso municipalities shows utter disappointment as people are impatiently waiting for the new train service to be introduced.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Regional Traffic Project Barra Mansa - Volta Redonda - Resende - Barra do Piraí

The municipalities of Barra Mansa, Volta Redonda, Resende and Barra do Piraí have proposed a new scheme to introduce regional train service in that part of the Paraíba valley. This densely populated area in the interior of the Río de Janeiro state had local train service during the era of the state railway RFFSA. The current project again envisages sharing the tracks of the quite intensively used freight railway line operated by MRS Logística.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Test Run Natal – Nordelândia

On 18 September 2014, the first test runs with a 3-piece diesel railcar from Bom Sinal started on the CBTU line Natal – Nordelândia. It is the first of 12 such units which are being delivered to the suburban train system of Natal. The second unit will arrive in November with the remaining 10 due to be delivered during 2015. Together with the 2 new diesel locomotives, CBTU operations in Natal will be integrally modernised at the end of 2015. The lines Natal – Parnamirim (South line) and Natal – Nordelândia (part of the North line) will be operated exclusively by the Bom Sinal railcars while regional traffic Natal – Ceará Mirim will be operated by the new locomotives. On both lines, a number of new halts are under construction.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Opening Retiro

On 25 August 2014, Retiro station of the new Metro has been opened, extending the line to 7,3 km in operation.
(Source: G1 – Bahia)

Opening Oratório - Vila Prudente

At the end of August, the first 3 km long section of the São Paulo monorail, linking Oratório with Vila Prudente, has been opened after a number of delays. However, operations of the line which runs about 15 metres above ground, are limited to test runs during just a few hours per day. It is hoped that the line will be operational on its full length of 26,6 km and 18 stations until 2017.
On the Metro system, the station of Fradique Coutinho on line 4 (yellow) has been opened at the end of September. The next stations to become operational are Oscar Freire at the end of 2014 and Higienópolis in March 2015.
(Source: G1 - SP)

Commissioning of electric miltiple units

Trensurb of Porto Alegre put the first of 15 new electric multiple units in service on 22 September 2014. The entire new fleet, built by CAF and Alstom, is expected to be available for daily service in February 2015. Extension of the fleet became necessary in order to cover services on the extended line to Novo Hamburgo.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Theft of copper

The Metro de Recife is suffering from theft of copper cables, affecting both signalling and power supply cables. Damage caused by these thefts and train cancellations amounted to BRR 90'000 between January and June of the current year, and another damage of BRR 50'000 happened between July and September.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Test Runs Santos – São Vicente

Test and training runs are taking place since early September with the new tram units between the stations Nossa Senhora das Graças and Prefeito José Monteiro of the line Santos – São Vicente. That section is 100% complete and the overhead line is under tension.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

Pupil Transport in Tubarão

The municipalities of Içara and Tubarão are planning to shift pupil transport to the railway. After extensive negotiations between the involved municipalities, Santa Catarina state and the railway operator Ferrovia Tereza Cristina, the major hurdles appear to be overcome; and on 25 September 2014 the first test run of a pupil train took place. According to media reports everything went well and without any problems; and the railway company is looking forward to carry this segment of traffic. It is now envisaged to upgrade stations for the purpose and options are being explored. Expectations are that regular traffic can start at the end of 2014. Trains will consist of existing tourist train stock, hauled by a diesel locomotive.
(Source: G1 – SC)

Payment difficulty at Zamin

Early in September 2014, the 34 employees in charge of security at the Estrada de Ferro do Amapá EFA went on strike because their employer Zamin Mineração hadn't paid their wages since July. These employees are not directly employed by the railway but are under contract with Zamin. They are in particular responsible for the safe circulation of passenger trains on this line. The resident's association supports the demand of these employees. The mining company Zamin indicates cash-flow problems as a reason.
(Source: G1)

Only sporadic Traffic Palmas (Tocantins) – Anápolis (Goiás)

The Ferrovia Norte-Sul, opened on 22 May 2014, is still only sporadically used for traffic, in particular on the 855 km long section Palmas (Tocantins) – Anápolis (Goiás). The reason for this are a number of infrastructure problems. Erosion caused track settlements at a spot 55 km north of Anápolis and residents fear that derailments could occur. Bureaucratic hurdles are causing difficulties to the application of “finishing touches”, after the public accounts tribunal identified an excess of costs of almost BRR 200 Mio over budget during construction of the line. Furthermore, potential freight customers criticize that the still incomplete signalling system could lead to accidents.
(Source: TV Anhanguera)

Floods Trem des Termas

Severe flooding during the first months of this year caused damage to the track of the Trem das Termas in the Marcelino Ramos area. The operator ABPF Santa Catarina was able to completely repair the track within 8 weeks with the help of the freight concessionaire ALL. ALL provided heavy plant and also a diesel locomotive with freight wagons.
(Source: ABPF)

Floods Porto Velho

Flooding in the first months of 2014 caused severe damage to the museum and railway complex of Porto Velho. Since then, the operators of the power plants along the Rio Madeira have transferred monies from their social welfare fund to the culture fund Funcultural of the city of Porto Velho. At the end of September, tidying up work on the station/museum compound and along the line started. It will, however, not be possible to complete the work until the 100 year jubilee of the city on 02 October 2014 and they will continue for a further 3 months. The federal authority for protected monuments IPHAN as well as agencies of the Rondônia state are also contributing to the work.
(Source: G1)

Trem do Pantanal only Aquidauana – Miranda

Since 06 September 2014, the Trem do Pantanal has been limited to the section Aquidauana – Miranda, every second week outward on Saturdays and return on Sundays. The city of Campo Grande unsuccessfully protested against the shortening of the Trem do Pantanal route as they had invested BRR 1,6 Mio in 2009 in the upgrade of Indubrasil station on the outskirts of the city. The operator of the service, Serra Verde Express, refers to customer surveys which indicate that the westernmost section from Aquidauana is the most attractive one.
(Source: Aquidauana News)

27.07.2014

Vitória - Belo Horizonte

From 5 August 2014 passenger trains between Vitória and Belo Horizonte will operate with the Romanian-built coaches, which are offering air-condition in all classes. Fares remains unchanged.
(Source: Volta o Trem 18-6)

26.06.2014

Passenger Traffic

In order to promote projects for regional trains, the national administration for land transport (ANTT) created the “Empresa Brasileira dos Transportes Terrestres/EBTT”. Depending on each route, the new company will rehabilitate and operate lines by themselves or source out operations to private firms. EBTT will also co-ordinate all passenger transport related matters between the competent ministries and rail operators. At the top of the list are the lines São Luis – Itapecuru, Maringá – Londrina, Caxias do Sul – Bento Gonçalves and Pelotas – Rio Grande. It is, however, somewhat obscure why the Brasilia – Luziânia project hasn't been integrated into EBTT, as detail planning on that line is currently under way. It is expected that works on the aforementioned lines will start in 2015 while opening is envisaged to happen between 2016 and 2018. The funds for this have been reserved.
(Source: Revista Ferroviaria)

Modernisation long distance Traffic

The Estrada de Ferro Vitória a Minas received in May 2014 a fleet of 56 newly-built passenger carriages, manufactured by Astra Vagoane Arad in Romania. They are currently being commissioned for the daily Belo Horizonte – Vitória passenger train. The current fleet will still be used on the Desembargador Drummond – Itabira branch line. Another batch of 44 new carriages, also built by Astra Vagoane Arad, will be delivered to the Estrada de Ferro Carajás. With this, the two passenger trains in Brazil with the longest journeys will be fully modernised.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

Porto Alegre

Commercial service on the extension of the suburban railway of Porto Alegre, Trensurb, started on 8 May 2014, connecting the stations of Industrial, Fenac and Novo Hamburgo with the city centre. Local residents along that stretch of line were able to use the trains at certain hours from December 2013, and scheduled train service to Novo Hamburgo was available from April 2014 between 0500 and 2300 hours, however, their use was free during that period.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Cuiabá – Varzea Grande

Delivery of trainsets for the new Light Rail Cuiabá – Varzea Grande is currently taking place. At the start of May 2014, 29 of the 40 trains which are being built by CAF in Spain had already been received at the Varzea Grande depot, 2 had just cleared customs at Santos port and another 4 were on their way overseas to Santos. Opening of the line had to be postponed until 2015 due to construction delays.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Açailândia – Anápolis

After a construction time of 27 years and a delay of 3,5 years, state president Dilma Rousseff officially opened the last section of the 1574 km long Norte-Sul railway line (Açailândia – Anápolis) on 23 May 2014. This new line connects the federal states of Maranhão, Tocantins and Goiás. At Açailândia, it branches off the Estrada de Ferro Carajás which also has the 1600mm broad gauge.
Currently under construction is an extension of the Norte-Sul from Anápolis via Ouro Verde to Estrela d'Oeste in the western part of São Paulo state; and further extensions are planned in the north to Belém and in the south to Panorama, Chapecó and Rio Grande.
(Source: Globo TV, ANTT)

09.06.2014

CBTU Natal

CBTU Natal got the first new PR7 locomotive built new by Progress Rail in Brazil with the number 1401. It is the first time that CBTU is introducing brand-new locomotives for these suburban services.
(Source: Volta o Trem 18-5)

Bonde Santa Teresa

Reconstruction of the Bonde (Tramway) Santa Teresa in Rio de Janeiro has only reached 25%, this means that this histo-rical tramway will not be available for the Football World Cup.
(Source: Volta o Trem 18-5)

Santos - São Vicente

The new tramway between Santos and São Vicente makes some progress, too few to be put into operation until the World Cup, but inauguration is expected for the change of the year 2014/2015. The trains have been delivered and are stored in operational condition at São Vicente and local residents are awaiting the opening of the line impatiently. Fares will be identical to those of the bus services.
(Source: Volta o Trem 18-5)

Metro Salvador

June 11, 2014 will see the opening of the first 7,3 km long section of line 1 of the Metro at Salvador between Lapa and Retiro. Until Sept. 15 trips will be for free. Construction took 15 years. The Retiro-Pirajá section will open January 2015.
(Source: Volta o Trem 18-5)

27.03.2014

Paraíba

The city of João Pessoa in the Paraíba state has been allocated BRR 566 Mio from a fund created for improvements of local traffic in seven cities in the centre and north of Brasil. The total amount available from this fund in 2014 is BRR 3,8 billions. The city will spend this money in upgrading its public transport system, investing BRR 166 Mio in the suburban line operated by CBTU. This will be in addition to the BRR 70 Mio which have been provided for the purchase of 8 new VLT (diesel trainsets) from Bom Sinal. The new investment will allow for construction of 4 additional stations in the Santa Rita, João Pessoa and Cabedelo municipalities, the relocation of Bayeux and Jacaré stations to better suitable locations, track renewal, fencing of the line and improvements of level crossings in order to enhance safety. These works, taking place until late 2015, will modernise the line, increase its productivity and double the daily demand to 30'000 passenger journeys. Other measures include improvements of the urban bus system, leading to a better integration with the railway and the erection of several rail/bus interchanges.
(Source: CBTU)

Alagoas

In February 2014, president Dilma Rousseff granted BRR 400 Mio from the “Program to accelerate growth” (PAC2) to the Alagoas state, a sum which never in the past had been made available to that relatively small federal state in the northeast of Brazil. The money is destined to improvements of public transport in the Alagoas municipalities. One of the beneficiaries will be the CBTU suburban line of Maceió, receiving BRR 206,5 Mio. The money will be used for further securing the track to avoid flood damage in the Satuba municipality. In the past ten years, the line was severely disrupted there on four occasions. Also, overbridges will be built for 4 heavily transited roads, and another 23 level crossings will be fitted with barriers or flashing lights. 13 stations will be integrally modernised, and construction of the new line to Mangabeiras with 4 stations will finally commence.
(Source: CBTU, Fahrplancenter archive)

Rio Grande do Norte

The municipality of São Gonçalo do Amarante outside of Natal is currently the town with highest level of economic growth in the Rio Grande do Norte state. In the near future, the new airport of the Natal region will be built within the boundaries of that same municipality. Recently, the suburban train operator CBTU, the city of Natal and the municipality of São Gonçalo do Amarante have agreed to build a new railway line from Natal to São Gonçalo while the new airport is under construction. That line will serve two purposes, one of it providing access to the airport and the other establishing suburban traffic to Natal. The track alignment has been reserved in the local planning schemes.
(Source: CBTU)

Minas Gerais

The Metrô of Belo Horizonte experienced in 2013 a growth of its passenger numbers of 13,5% over the previous year; that's an increase of about 7 Mio passenger journeys. In total, 57,4 Mio passengers used the single metro line of the city which spans from Eldorado (Contagem municipality, in the west) via Gamaleira, Calafate, the centre of Belo Horizonte, Santa Inês and São Gabriel to Villarinho in the north.
(Source: CBTU)

06.02.2014

Rio de Janeiro

Alstom commenced with the building of a work to produce tramways for Rio de Janeiro at Taubaté.
(Source: Volta o Trem 14-1)

Santos

After a longer interruption works regained speed on the new tramway at Santos and in July first test runs are expected.
(Source: Volta o Trem 14-1)

Bom Sinal/Voith Turbo

Bom Sinal contracted Voith Turbo for the delivery of tractionsystems, couplings, bogies etc. for new railcars which will run at Natal and João Pessoa.
(Source: Volta o Trem 14-1)

São Luis

The new light rail system of São Luis in Maranhão state will use part of the existing ex-RFFSA line South of the city for a suburban service between Tirirical and Estiva. The already delivered two railcars built by Bom Sinal will run on this line after some repairs have been carried out. This solution was taken after the building of two new lines across the city was stopped due to financial concerns and the already partly built line to Anjo da Guarda was lifted again. The two railcars are stored in a workshop of Transnordestina.
(Source: Volta o Trem 14-1)

Porto Alegre

Trensurb of Porto Alegre started tests on the newest built section in Novo Hamburgo municipality on January 22, 2014.
(Source: Volta o Trem 14-1)

13.01.2014

Rio de Janeiro

The SuperVía suburban railway company is rejuvenating its fleet. In December 2013 delivery of the first suburban coaches started out of a total of 80 built by Alstom Brasil. The new coaches have air-condition, automatic door interlock and internal CCTV. Each trainset composed of those coaches will have a capacity of up to 2600 passengers per journey. New workshops/depot were built near Deodoro station for that purpose; they are part of the 280 Mio BRR worth order.
Delivery of a further 240 new coaches built in China will start in April 2014. Some prototype vehicles are already in operation.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

Rio de Janeiro/Santa Teresa tramway

The repair and refurbishment works on the „Bonde“, the Santa Teresa Tramway, are finally under way. Since November 2013, special tramway rails are being laid over a distance of 10 km, replacing thereby the provisional rails partly in place. The firm T'Trans is currently building 14 new tramcars which are very similar to the heritage vehicles. Overhead lines, rectifier, stops and workshops are all under refurbishement, too.
Operations are scheduled to start at the end of March 2014 on the Arcos – Praça Odylo Costa Neto section with the Praça Odylo Costa Neto – Dois Irmãos section following in June 2014. In the second half of the year, the Dois Irmãos – Silvestre line is expected to re-open as well as the currently closed line Carioca – Francisco Muratori.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

Brasília – Luziânia

The Ministry of Transport initiated the detail planning for the regional traffic between Brasília and Luziânia.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

Porto Alegre

The second Aeromóvel A200 set with a capacity of 300 passengers has been received at the end of November 2013. Testing started shortly before Christmas, and the set is expected to enter regular traffic some 3 months later. The currently used A100 vehicle, about half the size, will then serve as the spare vehicle.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

Goiânia

Construction of a LRT line in Goiânia has been awarded to Odebrecht Transportation. The contract with a value of 1,3 billion BRR includes construction of 13,6 km long tramway line with 12 stops in Avenida Anhanguera. Only 2 tramways, each 33 metres long and with a capacity of 600 passengers, will travel on the line. Construction will start in 2014.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

Freight traffic

The biggest concessionaire ALL (América Latina Logística) could face its dissolution in 2014. It was already forced to cease its operations in Argentina, but throughout 2013 problems also increased in Brasil. There are numerous complaints from customers alleging that ALL failed to transport the contracted quantities of freight, or they weren't delivered on time. The government, on the other hand, criticizes that ALL failed to repair and re-open a number of lines or completed the work only with a major delay, although federal funding was provided at various stages. Repair work on some lines in the Rio Grande do Sul state weren't completed like those to Santa Rosa and São Borja. It didn't happen in Mato Grosso do Sul either where works between Aquidauana and Corumbá are still awaiting completion, despite federal funding available for this, too. The same applies to the Marília – Panorama line which operated precariously over a short period of time and has now closed again due to technical reasons.
Some figures released by ANTT (land transport authority) prove how insufficiently infrastructure maintenance is done. The heavily frequented line from Araraquara to Santa Fé do Sul (436 km) suffered a total of 79 accidents in the period from January 2012 to October 2013, of which 20 are considered as „serious“ with people injured or fatalities. This is compared with MRS Logística who operate a network of about four times the length of the aforementioned line, with many of its lines running through densely populated areas and with even heavier traffic. Within the same period of time, MRS suffered a total of just 9 accidents, of which 2 are counted as serious!
ALL tries to palliate the situation, mentions some minor problems with a few customers and points out that the value of their shares at the stock exchange plummeted from 23.00 BRR to just 8.00 BRR, leading to a temporary financial shortfall.

The freight concessionaire Transnordestina Logística TL, controlled by the Companhía Siderugica Nacional CSN, was split into two operations with the consent of its shareholders.
What is called Malha (network) 1 will include the metre-gauge lines São Luis – Teresina – Fortaleza – Mucuripe, Arrojado – Itabaiana – Recife, Itabaiana – Paula Cavalcante – João Pessoa – Cabedelo and Paula Cavalcante – Natal – Macau (it is noted that the lines from Itabaiana northbound to Macau don't have any traffic at all with the exception of the CBTU suburban trains of João Pessoa and Natal. These lines may be devolved to the federal government in the medium term). Malha 1 will operate under the name FTL (Ferrovía Transnordestina Logística).
The current name will be kept for Malha 2, which includes the broad-gauge lines Missão Velha – Salgueiro – Trindade – Eliseo Martins, Salgueiro – Porto de Suape and Missão Velha – Porto de Pecém. Only the last mentioned line is currently in operation (most of it in mixed gauge 1600 mm/1000 mm) while the others are at different stages of construction.
There is no mention at all of the lines from Recife southbound to Propriá (border to Sergipe state), Missão Velha – Juazeiro do Norte (Connection to the Cariri local train) and the old, now closed line Jaboatão – Salgueiro whose eastern section from Jaboatão to Caruarú is on the aim of CBTU for regional traffic.
The purpose of this move is to prevent monies reserved for the construction of new lines from flowing to the old metre-gauge lines. At the same time, Taquari Participações together with CSN were able to expand the capital base for Malha 2 to 193,449 Mio shares.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

Infrastructure

After an extended break, the state railway construction firm Valec resumed works on the FIOL (Ferrovía de Integração Oeste Leste) in the south of Bahia state. This line will have an overall length of 1022 km, of which works on a 500 km long section between Ilhéus and Caetité have been released. However, issues arised with the construction firm for the first 125 km stretch, and the works have to be re-advertised. Earth works on the remaining 375 km have hugely progressed. Environment impact certificates were issued in November 2013 for the further 522 km and a number of construction lots were awarded until early December 2013, including the 2,9 km long bridge across the Rio São Francisco in the Bom Jesús de Lapa municipality. This is the biggest single structure of the line, costing some 135 Mio BRR alone.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

02.01.2014

Maceió - Lourenço de Albuquerque

With the exception of one service in each direction all trains between Maceió and Lourenço de Albuquerque are now operated with new Bom Sinal-built DMU’s. Monday to Friday there are now 10 and Saturday 5 services in each direction.
(Source: Volta o Trem 17-8)

Rio de Janeiro - São Paulo - Campinas

Despie the great delais on the project for a high-speed railway between Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo and Campinas the Federal government keeps this project atop on the agenda, because construction of a new highway or more airports would be more expensive than the railway.
(Source: Volta o Trem 17-8)

08.12.2013

Metro Teresina-Timón

The Urban Train of Teresina will be extended to the neigh-boring town of Timón in Maranhão state. The extension has now been incorporated into the national plan for regional train services. The opening date has not yet been fixed.
(Source: Volta o Trem 17-7)

23.09.2013

Infrastructure

The federal government is currently creating a Federal Railway Administration which will integrate the current state railway infrastructure agency Valec. This body will be responsible for the construction of new railway lines which may be used by the state and by third-party operators. Also, all those lines devolved to the state by the current concessionaires will be transferred to the new entity. Some of the planned regional services may as well be operated by this federal agency if no other operator can be found.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária, Valec)

No Closure

The planned closure of the metre-gauge lines in the Bahía state by the operator FCA has been averted. The state president Dilma Rousseff herself has guaranteed that those lines will be kept operational after protests from the Bahía state authorities.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Sobral

The modern urban railway of Sobral in the Ceará state is taking shape. The south line Cohab II – Sumaré, which shares a section of the Fortaleza – Teresina main line with freight trains, is nearly complete and test runs will start in September 2013. All 11 stations along the route are complete as well as track renewal. Level crossing protection is in place and technical testing is under way. The north line is essentially complete between Cohab III and Grendene, only the section beyond Grendene to the future workshops has not been built yet. The trackbed of the former line to Camocim will be used for this, however, 12 private dwellings have to be removed. Nine of those buildings have already been acquired and the residents moved out, while compensations are being negotiated for the remaining three buildings. Three diesel multiple units, out of five, were already delivered by Bom Sinal and loading gauge trials have been conducted. Staff training is also ongoing.
(Source: Metrofor, Metro Sobral, Revista Ferroviária)

Porto Alegre

On 10th August 2013, the first line of the Aeromóvel, a system invented and developed in this city, was inaugurated. The current, first vehicle numbered A-100 with a capacity of 150 passengers carried 12'302 passengers in its first 10 days of operation between the “Aeroporto” station of the suburban railway and Terminal 1 of the Porto Alegre International Airport. At this time, the service operates from Monday to Friday between 10:00 and 16:00 hours. At the end of September, a second, bigger vehicle A-200 with a capacity of 300 passengers will be delivered and from November 2013 on, the line will operate automatically from 05:30 and 23:20 hours.
The local council of Canoas, north of Porto Alegre, has suggested to connect the town centre and their suburban railway station with an Aeromóvel line to improve access to the Trensurb system.

(Source: Trensurb)

São Paulo

Construction of CPTM Line 13, linking the Engenheiro Goulart station with the international airport of Guarulhos, begun on 16th September 2013. Construction time is expected to last 18 months. The line will be mostly elevated to cross the Tietê river and the Ayrton Senna and Dutra motorways. The only intermediate station, called Guarulhos-Cecap, will serve the centre of that city. The new line will terminate at the Terminal 4 of the airport, from where the airport administration will build a link line to the other terminals. It is, however, not yet decided if this will be a tramway/light rail or a monorail. The São Paulo state will spend some 2,1 billion BRR for this project.
(Source: Revista Ferroviaria)

The suburban railway operator of São Paulo, CPTM, has ordered 65 8-car trains which will be delivered in two batches, one of them manufactured by CAF do Brasil and the other by Hyundai Rotem.
(Source: Revista Ferroviaria)

Rio de Janeiro

The suburban railway operator SuperVia is finally upgrading the most heavily used section of their system between Central (Dom Pedro II) and Deodoro with ATP (Automatic Train Protection) system. This became very urgent after a dramatic increase of accidents on this line, for example trains crashing into other, broken down trains occupying the track.
(Source: Revista Ferroviaria)

Caruarú

The city of Caruarú in the Pernambuco state has published plans for a funicular line from the city centre to the upper neighbourhoods. It is hoped that private firms will participate in the construction.
(Source: Revista Ferroviaria)

Campinas

The city of Campinas (São Paulo state), which counts over 2 Mio inhabitants, is planning the construction of a “light metro” or tramway to ease transport problems. Help from the federal government has been requested for this purpose. The reply came directly from the state president Rousseff saying that the state will assist and support planning.
Campinas undertook the construction of an urban railway some 30 years ago, at that time with the support of FEPASA (former São Paulo state railway company). That railway, however, operated only for a short period of time. The line used the trackbed of a former, dismantled railway line which generously avoided all centres of population and, on top of it, the project was never fully completed due to lack of funds.
Source: Revista Ferroviaria, Fahrplancenter

(Source: Revista Ferroviaria, Fahrplancenter)

Freight traffic

Even before the nearly completed north-south railway (Ferrovía Norte-Sul) from Açailândia to Anápolis becomes operational, the detailed planning of its extension in south-southwesterly direction has already started. It is to be extended from Ouro Verde (Goiás state) to Estrela d'Oeste (São Paulo state). It will then continue from Estrela d'Oeste to Dourados in the Mato Grosso do Sul state. Further, a line will connect Maracajú in Mato Grosso do Sul eastbound via Lapa to the port of Paranaguá. Another route will start at Uruaçú in Goiás state and reach Campos in the Rio de Janeiro state. All those lines have been included into the programme for the development of infrastructure and logistics (PIL).
(Source: Revista Ferroviaria, Valec)

21.09.2013

Meter Gauge

State president Rousseff guaranteed that the metre gauge lines within Bahía state wouldn’t be closed to traffic.
(Source: Volta o Trem 17-5)

25.08.2013

FCA Meter Gauge

FCA metre gauge lines in the North of Minas Gerais, in Bahía & Sergipe states may be closed to all traffic and later replaced by a new broad-gauge line from Belo Horizonte to the Northeast.
(Source: Volta o Trem 17-4)

16.06.2013

TAV

After it had been clarified that the brazilian state will build the high-speed line (TAV) Rio de Janeiro – São Paulo – Campinas, eight syndicates expressed their interest to provide the trains and operate the route. Four syndicates are multinational and the remaining four are from France, Spain, Belgium and Italy. Spanish firms are also represented in the multinational syndicates. The offer with the lowest price came from the french Egis group. Egis already operates the Campinas Viracopos airport which, during its upgrade, was prepared for accommodating a railway station.
(Source: O Globo)

Trem Pé Vermelho

The project for a passenger train service over the 152 km long line from Maringá to Londrina was presented in May 2013 to the public in the 13 municipalities affected. The route should in fact start at Paiçandú and connect the towns of Maringá, Sarandi, Marialva, Mandaguari, Jandaia do Sul, Cambira, Apucaraná, Arapongas, Rolândia, Cambé, Londrina and Ibiporã. The overall population counts about 2 Mio people. At present, several of those towns are served just once a day by bus although the demand for transport exceeds that offer by far. The government envisages a Public Private Partnership to carry out the project.
(Source: O Diário)

Brasília – Goiânia

The planning of the Brasília – Goiânia route has achieved significant progress. It has been decided that Alexânia and Anápolis will be intermediate stations. Maximum speed will be 180 km/hour and it is still debated if diesel railcars or electric trains will be used. Outside peak hours the line will also be available for freight trains. Travel time for passenger trains will range from 65 to 75 minutes. Construction work is due to start before the end of 2015, however, no opening date is known yet.
(Source: Diário da Manhã)

Brasília – Luziânia

This route of about 60 km length will use the existing freight line of FCA and serve the Bernardo Saião station in Brasília. The detail planning, currently under way, comprises the construction of new halts and the upgrade of existing stations. Some passing loops are also required. 4-car diesel railcars with a capacity of 900 people per unit will run at a maximum speed of 110 km/hour with travel times ranging from 45 to 60 minutes, depending of the number of intermediate stops. Today, some 600'000 people commute from Luziânia and the intermediate towns to Brasília for work or study and it is expected that some 40'000 to 45'000 will use the train. Detail planning is due to be completed by the end of 2013, the works will be awarded during 2014 and the first trains should run 24 months after the start of construction work.
The demand of the Luziânia local government to extend the route within the boundaries of the municipality, away from the existing railway line, will not be met at this time. The Ministry for Transport will watch how traffic developes first and decide later.
(Source: Diário da Manhã)

Salvador

The government of the Bahía state has advertised the extension of the Metro under a Public Private Partnership scheme. The plans envisages the following steps:
Completion of line 1 between Lapa and Acesso Norte
Extension of stage 2 of line 1 to Pirajá and construction of the line from Águas Claras to Cajazeiras.
Construction of line 2 from Avenida Bonocô to Lauro de Freitas.
The entire network is due to be completed by December 2016.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Fortaleza

Construction of the urban railway line Mucuripe – Parangaba in Fortaleza will suffer a delay, because at least 51 families could not yet be relocated. Some of the affected families are living in second generation on railway land. Substitute apartments were offered to them, however they were refused because they are located in other neighbourhoods of the city. A meeting of affected residents produced an alternative proposal for the construction of homes close to the existing houses, but those plans need scrutinised by the city's authorities. It is still hoped that the line can be opened for the football World Cup 2014, although in early June 2013 only 30% of the works are completed.
(Source: Revista Ferroviaria)

Recife

According to media reports, the Metro “Metrorec” is still not ready for the football World Cup 2014. For example, multilingual signage at stations is missing. The Joana Bezerra station is considered dangerous, because motorcycles and even horses are “parked” at entrance doors. It is told that the Cosme e Damião station, close to the Arena Pernambuco which is one of the venues of the World Cup, is lacking any signage apart of the signs showing the direction of trains. On top of it, the station may be too small to accommodate the crowds after the matches as the Arena Pernambuco can host 46'500 people. Furthermore, the planned shuttle bus line between station and arena has not yet been established; not even a stop for it exists, sources told.
(Source: Lance!NET)

Campos do Jordão

Repair and upgrade work at the mountain section between Piracuama and Santo Antônio do Pinhal are still ongoing after the derailment of a railcar near Santo Antônio do Pinhal in November 2012. The accident caused the death of 3 people, and a further 41 were injured. Train service is currently limited to the Pindamonhangaba – Piracuama and Santo Antônio do Pinhal – Campos do Jordão sections. The investigation of the accident is still ongoing, and sources at CPTM, which is in charge of the upgrade work, are unable to tell when operations will be resumed.
(Source: G1 – Vale do Paraíba)

Santos

With some delay, the construction work on the new city railway from Santos to São Vicente started on 29th May 2013. The 9,5 km long line will have 11 stops and electric overhead lines. It will, therefore, be the first modern tramway in Brazil. The fact that the line will be built on the track alignment of the former coast railway Santos – Peruíbe simplifies the construction process considerably and the works are due to be completed within 12 months according to most recent plans. Construction started simultaneously from both terminals. 22 seven-car trains will operate on the line.
A number of legal and technical issues have delayed the start of construction work on the line leading from Conselheiro Nébias (on the aforementioned line) to Valongo in Santos. It was originally planned to open this 6 km long line first. Work will now start from Valongo in September 2013 and the line with its 9 stops is due to be ready for operations a bit over a year afterwards.
(Source: G1 – Santos)

Paranapiacaba

Village and station of Paranapiacaba are to be renovated and preserved for future generations within the scope of a federal programme for the conservation and renovation of historic sites and places. The project includes all railway buildings and the tracks not used by MRS Logística, but not the stored “Locobreques” of the former rope railway to Santos.
The local government of the Santo André municipality were annoyed by the decision of the federal government as no previous consultation took place. The society for the preservation of railway heritage, ABPF, on the other hand, adopted a wait-and-see policy. ABPF operate a heritage train on weekends over a short stretch of line at Paranapiacaba, consisting of a fireless locomotive and a passenger carriage.
(Source: Diário de São Paulo)

Ferrovía do Frango

The Ferrovía do Frango railway project (“poultry railway” as frozen poultry meat is expected to be hauled to the ports) was introduced to the public at the beginning of June 2013. The 862 km long line will connect Dionísio Cerqueira and the port of Itajaí via Chapecó, Herval d'Oeste and Santa Cecília, crossing the Santa Catarina state in west-east direction. Representatives of the towns in the north of Santa Catarina demand, however, a different route which would include existing lines. According to the local government of Joinville, about 1,5 billion BRR could be saved if it was built from Joaçaba to Porto União da Vitória and from there used the already existing line via Mafra and Joinville to the port of São Francisco do Sul. The federal government has since agreed to negotiate the final alignment with the local authorities.
The first plans for the Ferrovía do Frango (also “Ferrofrango”) originate from the late 1980ies, elaborated by the federal railway RFFSA.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Juiz de Fora 

The federal ministry of transport provides 14 Mio BRR to build an avoiding line around the city of Juiz de Fora. Freight trains on the main line Rio de Janeiro – Belo Horizonte could then avoid crossing the city centre of Juiz de Fora with its many level crossings.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

São Francisco do Sul and Itajaí

The ports of São Francisco do Sul and Itajaí are investing heavily to attract more freight. Both count on increased rail traffic but Itajaí, however, doesn't even have a rail connection yet! The port authority of Itajaí decided that all construction work has to be carried out in a way which would allow the accommodation of railway track at any time.
(Source: Diário de Santa Catarina)

Lençóis Paulista

The ALL railway company is planning to build an avoiding line around the city of Lençóis Paulista to eliminate the numerous level crossing in the centre. Measures like this are becoming more and more urgent as rail freight traffic is strongly increasing with the ensuing noise pollution and accident risk that affects the towns and cities.
(Source: Jornal Tribuna)

Rail industry

There is an urgent need in Brazil for a rail production facility, based on the big demand of rails for new lines and track upgrades with a prospect of exporting rails to other countries in South America. Several firms have offered to build such a factory in the Minas Gerais state, but as the federal government will part-fund the construction they proposed to build such a facility in co-operation with the Grupo Vetorial in the Mato Grosso do Sul state. The centre-west region will see several new lines in the years to come, and existing lines need urgent upgrades. It is the view of the federal government that even two plants could exist at the same time.
(Source: A Crítica)

10.03.2013

Cuiabá

On 08th January 2013, the federal government has released the sum of 727 Mio Reais for the construction of the 22,3 km long light railway Cuiabá – Várzea Grande. This is the second payment to that scheme which is due to be operative in 2014, right on time for the Football World Cup. Five sections will be elevated, and another four will be built in cuttings. Three bridges will also be needed. A train will carry 400 passengers and a peak-time frequency of 4 minutes is envisaged. An independent body is supervising the investment and so far, no corruption has been detected.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Fortaleza

The Metrofor south line from Fortaleza Central station to Pacatuba should have opened for traffic in December 2012 with a delay of 2 ½ years. However, a further delay of 6 months is impending. The contractor who is to build the stations of José de Alencar and Chico da Silva has delayed the works and will hand over those stations in March 2013 at the earliest. The delay occurred because that contractor at one time stopped all works due to safety concerns because the overhead lines were already switched in and electric trains started running for testing and crew training.
Only after the definitive start of commercial operations the stations of Juscelino Kubitschek and Padre Cícero will be opened as works there are at an early stage (about 20% completed). Opening is expected during 2014.
(Source: various newspapers)

Maceió

In the first week of January 2013, CBTU Maceió took delivery of its eighth DMU supplied by Bom Sinal. After a testing period of 4 weeks, this DMU will start revenue service. Together with the 2 old loco-hauled rakes CBTU Maceió now operates a fleet of 10 units and plans to introduce a completely new timetable in order to offer considerably more services on the Maceió – Lourenço de Albuquerque line.
(Source: CBTU)

Porto Alegre

An amount of 2,4 billion Reais will be spent in Porto Alegre for the construction of a subway system with works starting in March 2013. A public consultation held in the Rio Grande do Sul state and supported by the local media showed that this project is one of the three most urgent infrastructure projects in the state. Twelve contractors, all from the Rio Grande do Sul state, will build the 14,88 km long line which will connect the city centre with the northern suburbs. The supplier of the rolling stock has not yet been chosen. Construction will follow the cut-and-cover method (a cutting which later will be covered), which would require only 3 to 6 months to complete. It is envisaged to open the line in 2017 at the latest.
(Source: various newspapers)

High-speed line

At the beginning of February 2013, the Brazilian government announced that the high-speed line linking Rio de Janeiro with São Paulo and Campinas will be built under any circumstances. During a long time it was hoped that the private sector would handle construction of the infrastructure, but this didn't occur. Now the government will directly take care of that. The government is still seeking expressions of interest for the supply of rolling stock and for operating the line with suitable candidates likely to be found. The evaluation of systems (TGV, ICE, Shinkansen or others) will last until August; the decision is then to be made in September 2013.
As already several contractors have been selected for the various stages of the project, the start of construction is expected in the second half of 2014. Land acquisition is already ongoing since 2012.
There seems to be no alternative to the high-speed line as, to catch up with the increasing passenger volume in this corridor at least two more motorways and two or three additional airports would be required. The overall cost for these would, however, be significantly higher than those of the proposed rail link.
(Source: Revista Ferroviária)

Tourist trains

Serra Verde Express, operator of the Curitiba – Paranaguá, Trem do Pantanal and Viana – Araguaia trains, will start operating three more services during 2013 and 2014:
The “Trem dos Mares Costa Verde” will connect Itacuruçá and Praia de Santo Antonio in Mangaratiba from July 2013. The line runs over 18 km along the coast southwest of Rio de Janeiro on the 1600 mm (5 ft 3 in) network. A Budd diesel railcar will be rostered to cover the services.
Also in July 2013, a tourist train will commence between Mairinque and São Roque. The line is 12 km long and part of the metre-gauge former Sorocabana railway. Theme of the train is the wine production in the São Roque area.
About 2014 operations are expected to commence on the 70 km long metre-gauge line linking Barra Mansa and Angra dos Reis. Passenger coaches will be refurbished during this year, and negotiations with FCA, concessionaire of the line, regarding track access and the lease of a diesel locomotive have already started. Within the next 10 to 12 months track repairs have to be carried out on the line which counts with a huge number of bridges and tunnels. The municipality of Angra dos Reis is eagerly awaiting the return of the train because until the mid-1990ies the federal railway RFFSA operated the tourist train “Trem da Mata Atlántica” between Angra dos Reis and Lídice until privatisation terminated with it. The line starts in the Paraíba valley, crosses the Serra do Mar and terminates at the Atlantic coast.
Passenger potential for the three lines is high as the lines to Mangaratiba and Angra dos Reis are within excursion distance from Rio de Janeiro, while the line to São Roque is close to São Paulo.
(Source: Revista Ferroviaria and others)

Freight traffic

The swiss manufacturer Stadler delivered at the end of January 2013 another two electric cogwheel locomotives to the operator MRS. Those broad-gauge (1600 mm/5 ft 3 in) locomotives will, like the identical ones delivered in 2012 and currently under testing, be running on the cogwheel section of the São Paulo – Santos line below Paranapiacaba.
(Source: various)

Fares

To keep public transport fares for bus and rail at a low level, state president Dilma Rousseff wants to lower taxes for the operators of public transport.
(Source: Volta o Trem 17-2)

10.02.2013

Serra Verde Express

Serra Verde Expresso, operator of tourist trains, like Curitiba-Paranaguá, will start with three more services. Mid-2013 will see the start of a railcar service between Itacuruçá and Mangaratiba (18 km) near Rio de Janeiro. End-2013 a service similar to this from Curitiba may start on the 70 km Barra Mansa – Angra dos Reis line and July 2013 may see the start of a tourist train between Mairinque and São Roque a 12 km long line west of São Paulo.
(Source: Volta o Trem 17-1)

17.01.2013

Freight traffic

Since November 2012, an environmental impact study is being prepared about the construction of a new freight railway leading from the port of Paranaguá to the west, bypassing the metropolitan area of Curitiba. The study is funded by both the Paraná state and the federal government.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

Ferronorte

Track laying on the section to Rondonópolis is well progressed. The last remaining 80 km to Rondonópolis are nearly complete and traffic is expected to start during 2013.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

The federal government has also decided to further continue construction towards Cuiabá, starting in 2014.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

Transnordestina

Industrial action and problems with land expropriations cause an increase of construction costs for the Salgueiro – Suape and Pecém – Salgueiro – Eliseo Martins lines. The opening of the lines, originally scheduled for the end of 2012, has been postponed until 2015.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

Cacequí – Santana do Livramento

The refurbishement of the Cacequí – Santana do Livramento line has been completed with a minor delay. It is now possible to resume international rail freight traffic between Brasil and Uruguay.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

Vehicles

In 2012, EMD opened a new plant at Sete Lagoas (Minas Gerais state). During the year, the first 21 locomotives for Eldorado Celulose were built. VLI (Valor da Logistica Integrada) has also ordered 14 locomotives of the same SD70Aces type.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

Passenger traffic – long distance

The Vale mining group has ordered 100 new passenger carriages from Arad in Romania for a total cost of 100 Mio Euros. The first 28 carriages will be delivered in January 2013 and will go to the Estrada de Ferro Carajás. It is, however, not yet clear if the new coaches will replace the current rake – running three round-trips a week between São Luis and Parauapebas – or if the timetable will be increased to a daily running.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

According to the manufacturer, 96 passenger carriages, 2 generator vans and 2 luggage vans will be built for Vale. The fleet of 96 passenger coaches will consist of first class as well as standard class carriages. As track gauges of both 1600 mm and 1000 mm are mentioned, it is believed that part of the fleet will go the Estrada de Ferro Vitória a Minas (Vitória – Belo Horizonte). Delivery of the vehicles will stretch until 2015.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

São Paulo

The construction of the CPTM suburban line 13 to the Guarulhos/Cumbica International Airport is facing huge criticism because it has been decided to establish its terminus at Terminal 4 of the airport, apparently in order to separate it from the planned high speed line Rio de Janeiro – São Paulo, which will also call at the airport. A free bus shuttle should transfer passengers from Terminal 4 to the significantly busier Terminals 1 and 2 and vice-versa. CPTM line 13 will branch off at Engenheiro Goulart station from line 12 and reach the airport mostly on an elevated alignment. The total cost is estimated at 1,2 billion Reais, and a fleet of 8 new trains will be ordered for the new branch.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

Brasília

The set-up of a local train service from Brasília Estação Rodoferroviária via Bernardo Saião and Jardim Ingá to Luziânia has been advertised in December 2012 by ANTT, the federal authority for land transport. It would use the existing metre gauge line which also sees the FCA freight trains. Some sections will be doubled in order to accommodate timetable needs, and a short branch line will connect the city centre of Luziânia. At a later stage, it is planned to extend the line within Brasília to Asa Norte. The passenger trains will be diesel powered.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

ABPF

The brazilian federation of heritage railways ABPF has joined forces with the land transport authority ANTT in order to prepare a nationwide inventory of railway lines, buildings and vehicles of all sorts. It has been discovered that the state railway companies RFFSA and FEPASA had incomplete inventories and ceased to update their respective records when they went out of business.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

Guararema – Luis Carlos

The fully refurbished steam locomotive 353, along with passenger carriages 288, 289 and 1089 were transferred at the end of September from São Paulo Moóca via Manoel Feio to their new area of action, which is a section of the São Paulo – Rio de Janeiro line. The set was hauled by an MRS diesel locomotive.
(Source: Fahrplancenter)

04.11.2012

Tourist Train

Plans for a new tourist train to Mangaratiba on the coast near Rio de Janeiro have been presented.
(Source: Volta o Trem 16-7)

Track Redevelopement

Rehabilitation of the international line Brazil-Uruguay reached the border station of Santana do Livramento.
(Source: Volta o Trem 16-7)

Derailation

A railcar of the Pindamonhangaba – Campos do Jordão electric interurban line derailed near Santo Antônio do Pinhal because of braking problems Saturday November 3, 2012, causing the death of 3 people and 42 have been injured.
(Source: Volta o Trem 16-7)

Build of tramcars

Bom Sinal may build the new electric tramcars for the new tramway in the city of Foz do Iguaçú. A novelty for Brazil.
(Source: Volta o Trem 16-7)

02.09.2012

Cuiabá

Based on a court order dated 17 August 2012, construction work on the planned urban railway (VLT) of Cuiabá has been resumed. It is hoped that the first line can be completed within 640 days. The preparation work had to be interrupted after a fact-finding committee considered a Bus Rapid Transit system (BRT) to be more economic. The overall cost for the urban railway will be 1,477 billions of Reais, while the BRT system would have cost 323,89 millions of Reais. The 40 trains of the Urbos type for the 23 km long network will be built by CAF in Spain; delivery is expected to start in October 2014.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

Foz do Iguaçú

As a big flow of visitors is expected to visit the Iguaçú waterfalls during the football World Cup 2014 and the Olympic games 2016, the city of Foz do Iguaçú has suggested the construction of a 40 km long urban railway VLT to connect the National park at the waterfalls via the city centre with the University for Latin American integration. The final project should be presented by the end of August 2012. The railway will be built in two stages; funding will be requested from the federal treasury.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

Natal and João Pessoa

CBTU have ordered a total of 20 diesel multiple railcars from Bom Sinal. 12 trains will go to Natal and the other 8 to João Pessoa.
On the Natal network, the first new lightweight units will cover the line Natal – Estremoz, while they will also cover the routes Natal – Parnamirim and Natal – Ceará Mirim at a later stage.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

Recife

The first lightweight diesel railcars built by Bom Sinal have been delivered and are currently undergoing testing. They will gradually take over from the old trains composed by locomotives and carriages. The first line to receive the new railcars is Cajueiro Seco – Cabo and then Cajueiro Seco – Camaragibe.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

Rio de Janeiro

The suburban train operator SuperVía has received delivery of the first electric multiple units built in China. The fact that the trains have been built according to north american AAR standards – the manufacturer proudly mentions it! - causes the need to increase station platform heights and their widening.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

The metro of Rio de Janeiro have also received their first China-built trains. As those trains exceed the current loading gauge, the tunnels have to be widenend by a few centimetres.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

The metre-gauge suburban line to Guapimirim, operated by the „Central“ company with diesel traction, will finally be refurbished. Rolling stock will be integrally renovated in order to enhance passenger comfort.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

São Paulo

The government of São Paulo state is negotiating construction of the Ferroanel (ring railway) with the federal governemnt, as this project is pivotal for the development of the entire railway system in the São Paulo metropolitan area. The ring railway will follow the alignment of the motorway ring around the metropolis and relieve the city centre from freight traffic, which in its turn would enable improvements of passenger train services. Freight trains could run via the ring railway 24/7; currently the dense suburban train traffic only leaves the night hours for freight trains to cross the city. This improvement would save about 2 Mio of lorry journeys per year transiting São Paulo.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

MRS Logística is planning to build new central workshops for diesel locomotives a Paraíba do Sul (Rio de Janeiro state).
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

The government of São Paulo state is putting the federal government under pressure in order to finally build the ring railway, so that the suburban railway CPTM can be extended and improved. The railway lines in the city centre will be shifted to a subterranean alignment which will also accommodate the planned regional lines. Those are as follows:
São Paulo – Jundiaí – Campinas (first section to be built until Jundiaí)
São Paulo – São Roque – Sorocaba
São Paulo – ABC – Santos
São Paulo – Guarulhos – São José dos Campos (this line will later be integrated into the high-speed corridor Río de Janeiro – São Paulo – Campinas).
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

Minas Gerais

A new steam-hauled vintage train service started on 21 July 2012, connecting the city of Rio Acima with the suburb of Bairro Labareda. Its commercial name is „Trem das Cachoeiras“ (Train of the waterfalls), as the 3,5 km long line is passing several waterfalls. The train runs up to 7 times on Saturdays and Sundays.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

São Paulo

Feverish activity is going on between Guararema and Luiz Carlos, a section of the old main line Rio de Janeiro – São Paulo. Both station buildings are being refurbished, and a new locomotive shed is under construction.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)

Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro state, along with the municipalities of Magé and Petrópolis, are planning to rebuild the railway line from Guapimirim to Petrópolis. It was part of the first railway line of Brazil. The alignment is still completely extant, however, at some spots residents have to move their buildings or relocate altogether as they are too close to the line. In the Magé municipality those works are already under way.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)