Rio Piedras Underground Heavy Rail Station

Client: Puerto Rico Highways & Transportation Authority
Location: San Juan, Puerto Rico
Cost: (Station) $95 Million
Total Project Cost: $350 Million
Date Started: 1997
Completion Date: 2005


Anil Verma Associates, Inc. (AVA) was the Architect of Record, Urban Designer and Inspector of Record to a Joint Venture Team of Kiewit, Kenny, Zachry (KKZ Construction Contractors) for the Design-Build contract responsible for Underground Heavy Rail Stations. Our responsibilities included: Architecture, Urban Design, Engineering Coordination, and Construction Management.


The Rio Piedras Contract consists of two subway stations and tunnels for the heavy-rail underground segment of the first Rapid Rail Transit Project in San Juan, Puerto Rico. This Design-Build contract of a heavy-rail transit system is a Federal Transit Administration Demonstration Project.

The Rio Piedras Station is a stacked drift tunnel station with deep shafts and cut-and-cover entrances at each end. This station lies right across from the Rio Piedras Plaza in a congested part of the historic district of the city and this has several historic and urban design considerations. AVA was responsible for the architectural design of the entire facility in the context of the existing city. Our team completely redesigned the ancillary equipment spaces to cut (80 feet) of cut-and-cover construction length from a proposed (916 feet) station box. This had a major impact on reducing construction costs. AVA worked closely with the local community and State Historic Preservation Office to implement façade design in the station headhouse fronting this historic Plaza de Recreo. Other headhouses were designed to blend with the context of the mixed commercial and residential uses of the neighborhood. AVA had extensive involvement during the construction phase of this station in this congested neighborhood to ensure quality and durability.


Stacked drift tunnel station with 800 feet station box and 450 feet center platform with ancillary facilities located at both ends of the station.

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