Jose Rubio Soto, Mexico’s Executive Coordinator of the Punta Colonet Multimodal Project, said yesterday that planning for the mega-port 130 miles south of Ensenada is completed, and construction will begin in 2011. Bids will be accepted in the first quarter of 2011. Speaking at a Tijuana Innovation forum, he said the project is Mexico’s #1 infrastructure initiative, and that 19 companies have expressed interest in bidding on its construction and operation. Depending on the final design that is selected, he said the cost could reach five billion dollars. The port is expected to handle six million containers per year, mostly from Asia and destined for the U.S. and Canada; a new rail line will connect the mega-port with a U.S. trans-shipping center. The project involves 33,000 hectares plus 9,000 in reserve, and envisions port services areas as well as industrial, residential and business zones.
Juan Molinar, head of Mexico’s Communications and Transportation Secretariat, in an interview yesterday with El Financiero, confirmed that improvement in the global economic environment has convinced his government to move ahead with the long-delayed Punta Colonet project. He said the tender for construction bids will be launched soon, and the project will be “scalable”, meaning it will be built in stages, growing over several years to its ultimate capacity of six million containers/year.