Colombia’s ANI approves GICA road proposal

Colombia’s Agencia Nacional de Infraestructura (ANI) approved the 28-year, $507m carriageway project in January.

After receiving an unsolicited proposal in November from Consorcio Promesa de Sociedad Futura to oversee a 28-year concession contract for the Girardot-Ibague-Cajamarca (GICA) carriageway public-private partnership (PPP) project, Colombia's Agencia National de Infraestructura (ANI) approved the project in mid-January, according to an ANI representative.

The Consorcio Promesa de Sociedad Futura is comprised of Constructora Colpatria, Mincivil, HB Steel Structures, Termotecnica Coindustrial and Latinco.

The project calls for the development, maintenance and operation of just over 225 kilometers (roughly 140 miles) of carriageway, connecting La Paila in the West to Cajamarca in the East, crossing through El Alambrado, La Herradura and Barcelona along the way, and with offshoot carriageways connecting Zona Franca, La Espanola and Calarca to the central corridor.

In addition to maintenance and operation of the existing 190-km stretch of carriageway managed by the Concession Girardot-Ibague-Cajamarca, the consortium would oversee installation of a 35.1-km second lane between Ibague and Cajamarca, addition of a 10.8 km second lane between Combeiba and Boqueron, installation of a Boqueron variant of 1.2 km, and installation of another 17-km variant between the Cocora Valley and Cajamarca that includes a 3-km Cajamarca byway.

Included in the scope of the project is the strengthening of the Cajamarca Bridge, and the addition of 57 bridges and seven tunnels, said the ANI representative.

The representative added that this is a key project for Colombia, as it will create a vital connection between the capital city of Bogota and Buenaventura, the country's most important Pacific port.

“After the provisions of corresponding negotiations have been made public by the ANI, and the specifications and conditions of the project were available for review by other interested consortiums for two months, we are able to announce that that we have not been presented with any other offers for development of the work, and today, we are commencing the process of adjudication, complying with the legalities, of the Consorcio Promesa de Sociedad Futura APP,” said Colombian Vice President German Vargas Lleras in a January 15 statement.

Vargas Lleras went on to estimate that investments to execute the work will reach 1.2 trillion pesos (€448 million; $507 million).

ANI estimates that the contract will create 2,400 jobs and that the bulk of new construction will take seven years to complete.

“We are pleased that under the leadership of President [Juan Manuel] Santos, Vice President German Vargas [Lleras], and Minister of Transport Natalia Abello, this project will be a reality. The changes introduced by the government to encourage private initiatives will allow the country to have the infrastructure it deserves and that drives improved productivity and competitiveness,” said ANI President Luis Fernando Andrade in a November statement when the PPP was originally proposed and approved.