The construction of the second line of the Sofia Metro is two months ahead of schedule, and will most likely be launched in June 2012, according to eager representatives of the Bulgarian authorities.
Bulgaria Prime Minister Boyko Borisov together with Sofia Mayor Yordanka Fandakova, Finance Minister Simeon Djankov, and EU Funds Minister Tomislav Donchev inspected Monday the construction of the metro at the Lavov Most ("Lions' Bridge") station with much fanfare; the section in question is being built by the Turkish company Dogus Insaat.
"When we broke the ground of this section I told the Turkish company that if they delay the construction, there will be severe sanctions. Right now they are two months ahead of schedule," Borisov declared in a brief speech. He said that the French company supervising the construction had reported flawless progress.
"Our estimates show that the second metro line will reduce the car traffic in Sofia by 25%. Let others promise you whatever they wish. I am telling you what we are doing – accelerated construction using billions of euro from the EU, the state, and the Sofia Municipality," the PM said referring to a protest rally organized by the opposition Bulgarian Socialist Party on Saturday that attracted 16 000 protesters again his policies.
The head of the Sofia Metropolitan company Stoyan Bratoev clarified that the second metro line will most likely be launched in June 2012.
At present, the Sofia Metro has only one operational line from the Obelya and Lyulin quarters in the northwest to the Mladost 1 quarter in the southeast. The second line will run from the Obelya and Nadezhda quarters in the north to the downtown quarter of Lozenets through the Central Railway Station and the Central Bus Station, with the first and second line crossing in the downtown.