Brazil cuts ribbon on new subway line crucial for Olympics

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Brazil’s highest officials celebrated the completion of a much-delayed $3 billion subway expansion that will play a crucial part in the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, holding a ribbon-cutting ceremony Saturday just days before the games are set to kick off.

The new Line 4, billed as the most important infrastructure project linked to the Olympics, will transport hundreds of thousands of athletes and fans between the city’s iconic beaches and Barra da Tijuca, which is home to the Olympic Park and most sporting venues.

“What was done here was a miracle,” Rio Mayor Eduardo Paes said, praising the subway line which traverses 10 miles of tunnels and verdant hills, through shantytowns and high-end beach neighborhoods.

The project has been fraught with problems, with repeated delays to the launch date and costs nearly doubling from the initial estimate. Only two months ago, problems securing final financing sowed doubts that the expansion would be ready on time.

In June auditors and experts worried that the delays could compromise safety testing, and an organization of railway specialists filed a complaint asking a judge to postpone the opening until the project was inspected by independent firms. The judge asked the state government earlier

Article source: http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/olympics/2016/07/30/brazil-cuts-ribbon-on-new-subway-line-crucial-for-olympics/87789328/

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