The project to build CTA is well-advanced: the Medium-Sized Telescope prototype and all three proposed designs of the Small-Sized Telescope have achieved ‘first light,’ and the Large-Sized Telescope and Schwarzschild-Couder Telescope are moving toward achieving the same success in in 2018. An inter-governmental agreement for construction and subsequent operation of the observatory, for which a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) is foreseen, is in preparation and the financial threshold is expected to be reached by the middle of 2018.
The below timeline illustrates the estimated timing for major project milestones through the beginning of 2020. In 2018, infrastructure conceptual planning for the northern hemisphere site is mostly complete, and the detailed designs and necessary permits for construction of the telescope foundations and infrastructure are being prepared. Construction will begin in 2019, if all goes as planned.