Complying with the strategy for development of transport network in Sofia, set out in the Master Plan, the needs of the city and the fact that the main sections of Line 1 (Obelya RD - Mladost RD in the direction Mladost 4 RD and Sofia airport) and Line 2 (Obelya RD – Lozenets quarter– Hladilnika) are under operation, the next stage from the development of Sofia metro is the construction of Line 3 – „Botevgradsko shose blvd.– Vladimir Vazov blvd. – Center – Ovcha Kupel RD”. The route line is based onWritten Statement No. ЕC-G-87/ 28.10.2011 from a meeting of Municipal Expert Council for Territorial Planning for selection of a route for Line 3; Written Statement No. ЕC-G-91/19.12.2012 from a meeting of Municipal Expert Council for Territorial planning on updating the route in Ovcha Kupel RD.
According to the approved route, Line 3 is 21 km long with 21 metro stations. In the approved route are planned line branches. First one, planned due to the big passenger flow, is in the eastern part of the line close to MS 7 in the area of Military academy and it is directed towards Slatina RD-Tsarigradsko shose blvd.
Considering the large scale of the project, the various methods of construction, the specifics of the lots and the limited financial resources, Line 3 is planned to be constructed in 4 stages:
First stage (constructed in the period 2016 - 2020) - this is the section from кm 4+300 – МS 5 (located where Vladimir Vasov blvd. starts at the crossing with Panayot Hitov str.) to кm 11+966,34 – after МS 14 (located at Zhitnitsa str. nearby the crossing with Tsar Boris III blvd.). This is the main central section of Line 3. Considering the complicated geological and hydrological settings of the construction and the passing right under Perlovska river and under large sewer collectors /tunnels/, the tunnel sections in the larger part of the route were constructed primarily by tunnel boring machine /TBM/ which is the only applicable method under these conditions. This stage includes delivery of 20 rolling stocks which are necessary for the operation of sections from Stage 1 and Stage 2 of Line 3 and construction of a depot in the area of Zhitnitsa str.
Second stage (west section) includes 4 metro stations and starts at the end of the underground section at кm 11+966,34 after МS 14, passes through "Ovcha Kupel" quarter and reaches кm 15+746,37 – МS 18, which is situated under the Ring road (Boycho Boychev" blvd.) between Centralna str. and railway line Sofia-Pernik. As a part of the project at MS 18 is constructed a railway stop for a connection with the national railway network. The entire section is under the ground.
Third stage - this is the section from кm 4+300 – beginning of МS 5 (located under Vladimir Vazov blvd. at the crossing with Panayot Hitov str.), to кm 1+300 – МS 2 (in Levski RD) – 3 km long with 3 stations. This section will be proposed construction when financing is provided.
MS 1 which is situated at Botevgradsko shose blvd. adjacent to the last tram stop, is planned for construction with an envisaged bus station at the area of the tram line on Botevgradsko Shose blvd.
Forth stage - the section starts at the entrance of the Military Academy at Evlogi and Hristo Georgievi Blvd.. It passes through Geo Milev RD, Slatina RD, along the Arena Armeets to Tsarigradsko Shose Blvd. It is 6 km long with 6 metro stations. A Preliminary Design for the section is under process and its construction is planned to be proposed for financing during the programming period 2021-2027.
According to the approved Operational Programme "Transport and transport infrastructure" 2014-2020 the first two phases (stages) of the project for the construction of Line 3 of Sofia Metro "Botevgradsko shose blvd. - Vladimir Vazov blvd.- CENTER – Ovcha kupel RD" are included for funding under the Priority Axis 3 “Improvement of intermodality for passengers and freights transportation, and development of sustainable urban transport”, Sub Priority 2 “Improvement of intermodality for passengers transportation”. In this relation and due to the provided financing currently under implementation are only the first two stages:
STAGE I of Line 3 – section from VLADIMIR VAZOV BLVD. – CENTER – ZHITNITSA STR.
This stage covers the construction of 7.8 km of metro lines, 8 metro stations, construction of depot at the area of Zhitnitsa street and supply of 20 trains needed for the operation of the sections of Stage I and Stage II of Line 3.
Total value of the project after conclusion of the tender procedures and signing contracts amounts to EUR 398,2 mln. VAT excl. out of which EUR 321,8 mln. grant provided by the Operational Programme “Transport and Transport Infrastructure“ 2014 – 2020.
Financing is provided after the approval of Application Form for provision of financial aid by the ERDF of EU by the means of Decision ОППТИ-1/2016 dated on 08.01.2016 issued by the Minister of MTITC and Head of MA of OPTTI and after the signing of Contract for financial aid No. ДОПТТИ–1/19.01.2016. The Project is approved by the EC by the means of Commission Implementing Decision С(2016) 2315 final dated on 26.04.2016.
Co-financing by the SM for the Project of Stage I amounts to EUR 76.4 mln VAT excl.
Project is completed on 26.08.2020.
STAGE II of Line 3 - section “ZHITNITSA STR. – OVCHA KUPEL RD – RING ROAD”
This stage covers the construction of 3.8 km of metro lines, 4 metro stations and railway stop for connection to the national railway network at the last metro station.
Total value of the project after conclusion of the tender procedures and signing contracts amounts to EUR 101,9 mln. VAT excl. out of which EUR 68,5 mln. grant provided by the Operational Programme “Transport and Transport Infrastructure“ 2014 – 2020. Financing is provided after the approval of Application Form for provision of financial aid by the ERDF of EU by the means of Decision ОППТИ-1/2016 dated on 08.01.2016 issued by the Minister of MTITC and Head of MA of OPTTI and after the signing of Contract for financial aid No. ДОПТТИ–6/16.05.2017. The Project is approved by the EC by the means of Commission Implementing Decision С(2016) 4041 final dated on 07.06.2017.
Co-financing by the SM for the Project of Stage II amounts to EUR 33.4 mln VAT excl.
Project is under implementation since 30.05.2017 and the construction workrs are complet. In progress are single and complex tests which are expected to be completed at the end of 2020.