Global Supply Crunch Obstructs Mexico City’s Mobility Projects
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Global Supply Crunch Obstructs Mexico City’s Mobility Projects

Photo by:   Serghei Savchiuc, Unsplash
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Pamela Benítez By Pamela Benítez | Junior Journalist & Industry Analyst - Thu, 12/16/2021 - 10:02

The global supply chain crisis has belated the development of Mexico City’s Trolleybus, along with other city mobility projects, mainly due to the steel shortage. These delays have affected the possibility of offering a unique, rapid, low-cost, sustainable and high-capacity transportation alternative.

Worldwide steel supply logistical problems caused by the COVID-19 pandemic have postponed the inauguration of the Eje 8 Sur Elevated Trolleybus until 2022, despite having 80 percent of the project completed. 

Mexico City’s government announced that Sections II and III of the electromobility transport will be inaugurated in 1Q22, while Section I until 2Q22. This project is expected to become an “iconic transportation in electromobility matters,” according to the city´s government.

“This electromobility project allows sustainable transportation and at the same time is fast, comfortable and is cheaper than trains while providing mobility capacity for more than 100,000 users per day […] the period for its completion will be extended, it has to do a lot with the supply chains," said Claudia Sheinbaum, Mexico City´s mayor.

The Trolleybus requires 2,000 tons of steel, of which 1,200 will be used for the elevated highway while the 800 remaining are set to be used in three pending stations, which are “Constitution of 1917”, “Penitenciaria” and “Tulipanes”, according to Jesús Esteva Medina, Secretary of Works and Services (SOBSE).  

However, the global supply chain crunch is also affecting the development of other mobility projects such as the restoration of Metro Line 12 due to the 23,000 tons of steel deficit.

“We are reviewing the steel’s availability and supply to make some adjustments to the project itself […] the waiting periods are up to two or three months, sometimes they increase to six months depending on the specifications,” said Esteva Medina.

The supply shortage affects the population’s means of transportation, especially as the Trolleybus is also expected to give coverage to the Mexico City´s Metropolitan area and connect the State of Mexico with the country’s capital through the Metro Line A and Line 12.

"It connects to the east of the city, right in the middle of the Iztapalapa district, with a mobility alternative that is unique in the world […] the Elevated Trolleybus has a projected length of 7.4 kilometers, 11 stations, as well as three sections,” said Sheinbaum.

The Trolleybus is also expected to connect to Santa Marta, where the Elevated Trolleybus that comes from Chalco and that is being jointly constructed with the government of the State of Mexico, is also contemplated to arrive. 

This becomes an obstacle to Mexico City’s plans to encourage the development of more sustainable mobility in the country, an objective that has been reported numerous times in the past by MBN.  

“Mexico City has explored several options and has some of the most ambitious projects to generate and address more electric and sustainable mobility. One example of this is STE’s commitment to acquire 500 trolleybuses by 2024, which would improve the city’s electric infrastructure and support the development of stronger and better networks. This initiative would also enable the planning and development of new routes, which require efforts from the private and public sectors,” wrote MBN during the 2H21.

Photo by:   Serghei Savchiuc, Unsplash

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