Mayan Train Starts 2021 With Significant Push
Last Friday, FONATUR announced that the Mayan Train’s latest tender is expected to be its last public one. A bid is expected to be chosen on Friday, Jan. 29. This tender will determine which contractor will take the lead and construct the train’s fifth segment. This is one of the train’s most commercially significant segments since it will run through tourist hotspots Cancun and Tulum, reported El Economista.
The tender was originally announced in August of last year but was cancelled in September after receiving only one bid. This consortium that participated included Greenfield SPV VIII, BlackRock México Infraestructura, PRODEMEX Construcciones, Promotora y Desarrolladora Mexicana, Promotora y Desarrolladora Mexicana de Infraestructura and Constructora de Infraestructura Nacional. The bid was declared economically unfeasible. However, since the previous investment that this bid represented happened before the Mayan Train project, as it was actually part of a project from the Enrique Peña Nieto administration for a train that went only from Cancun to Tulum, El Heraldo de Mexico reported that FONATUR had to pay compensation to BlackRock for work done despite the bid being rejected. The companies now bidding for work on the fifth segment include previous winners and competitors from the train’s other tenders, such as CICSA, ICA, Mota Engil and La Peninsular, among others.
This week, all the rights of way for the train’s first segment were also obtained, according to a report from Milenio. This contrasts strongly with the announcements made last week, also reported by Milenio, that stated the train's route in its second and third segment would have to be changed to protect the archaeological findings that the preliminary construction process revealed. This is just one of the elements standing in the project’s way. Last year ended with complaints from construction unions, indigenous organizations and environmental experts. Meanwhile, 2021 began with accusations from journalist Carlos Loret de Mola, who said properties connected to the president were going to increase in value as a direct result of the train’s development. These accusations were addressed today by the president, according to a report from LatinUs. However, the positive market momentum created by the project is undeniably strong. El Financiero reported that Amazon began developing warehouses and industrial parks in the Yucatan Peninsula to address new needs and opportunities that the train will create. Similarly, El Economista reports that an ongoing housing speculation frenzy is taking place in Tulum.