Porto LRT extension

General view of the Porto metro. SENER has been awarded the contract for the extension of Porto metro network. SENER will perform the detailed design of the new line (Circular Line) in the section between Boavista/Casa da Música and Praça da Liberdade. It will be an underground section of 2.8 km and four stations. The station located at Praça da Liberdade will be a significant challenge as it is located very close to the UNESCO heritage site being the historical city center.

This new contract adds up to SENER’s previous works in the Porto LRT. The company, with an office in Lisbon since 1991, led the joint venture in charge for the management of the technical assistance provided to the company Metro do Porto, S.A. Therefore, SENER was one of the key project partners, as it carried out tasks from the preparation of the preliminary studies (in 1994) to the election of the system, the preliminary design and the technical specifications, the evaluation of contractors’ bids and the subsequent negotiation with the shortlisted firms, the monitoring and review of the detailed designs, the project management, the tunnel construction and, finally, the commissioning of the line; it also advised Metro do Porto, S.A. in matters related to the system certification process.

In addition, between 2006 and 2010, SENER also participated in the monitoring of the operation and maintenance of the entire metro network operated by the consortium Normetro and was awarded the contract to develop the technical assistance for the second construction phase of this metro project. This latter work has included the review of the detailed designs and the launch of bids (for both project and execution of works) as well as the supervision of the execution of civil engineering works, the fixed equipment and the operation and maintenance.

Porto LRT, in operation since 2002, links seven municipalities of the Porto metropolitan area, has connections with the major bus and rail networks and reaches also Pedras Rubras international airport. Annually, it moves about 55 million passengers in its four lines, with a total length of 67 km and 71 stations, 14 of them underground. The network combines sections at-grade, with tracks over shared or segregated platforms, and underground sections, having 7 km of tunnels.

General view of the Porto metro.

From the outset, the system was designed with the aim to become a factor of urban renewal and regeneration. For this reason, its contribution to the preservation of Porto, a city that is included in UNESCO’S list of World Heritage, has been highlighted, being also noteworthy its contribution to the improvement in the conditions of life of its inhabitants as well as in the integration of isolated areas.

The quality of the project has been awarded the Veronica Rudge Green Prize, granted every two years by the School of Design at Harvard University to projects that stand out for their excellence in sustainable urban planning. Previously, in 2008, the system received from the International Association of Public Transport (UITP) the Light Rail Award - Best New System, which distinguishes the creativity and design of light rail systems around the world.