Jenifer Nunez, assistant editor

Jenifer Nunez, assistant editor

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After more than two years of construction, the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority's Expo Phase 2 reached a significant milestone as crews tied together the electrical components of Phase 2 of the line with Phase 1 at the Culver City station on Nov. 8 and 9.

Metrolinx in Toronto, Canada, will upgrade and modernize the entire signaling system within the Union Station Rail Corridor (USRC) starting next year, an improvement that will provide long-term benefits to both transit operations and customers.

The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has issued a final rule that strengthens training requirements for railroad employees and contractors who perform safety-related work.

Federal Railroad Administrator Joseph Szabo joined Congresswoman Kay Granger in celebrating the re-opening of Tower 55, a 141-year-old railroad interlocking on Nov. 7. The newly-rebuilt interlocking will improve safety while relieving rail congestion following a multi-million dollar overhaul.

Leaders of the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LACMTA) joined federal, state and local elected officials in the Mid-Wilshire District of Los Angeles Nov. 7 to break ground on the Purple Line Extension Project.

Bay Area Rapid Transit's (BART) new train to plane service, "BART to OAK," which provides an easy connection to Oakland International Airport, will open in time for Thanksgiving travel on November 22, 2014.

The Société de transport de Montréal (STM) is unveiling its three-year capital expenditures program (PTI), in which its investment spending forecasts for 2015-2017, evaluated at nearly CA$2.5 billion (US$2.2 billion), are outlined. These investments are needed to replace or upgrade equipment and infrastructure that have or will reach the end of their service life in the next few years.

The PTI details 46 projects, 12 of which represent 94 percent of investments, for a total of more than CA$2.3 billion (US$2 billion). A number of these projects will have a direct impact on improving transportation for customers.

This means the acquisition of 468 new AZUR cars, the major refurbish and refit of the Youville minor repairs shop, the development and commissioning of métro driving cab simulators, the raising of train platforms inside stations slated for elevators, the ongoing Réno-Métro umbrella program that includes both Réno-Systèmes and Réno-Infrastructures programs and the major refurbishment of Berri-UQAM station initiated in 2010.

In order to reach its objectives for growth, STM will focus nearly 50 percent of its investments on the replacement and expansion of its bus and métro rolling stocks, in the amount of CA$.1.3 billion (US$1.2 billion).

Over the next three years, the company will invest CA$660 million (US$581 million) for machinery, métro stationary equipment and other tools and equipment. Nearly 80 percent of that sum is earmarked for Phases III and IV of the Réno-Systèmes program that reconditions or replaces stationary equipment, mostly within the initial network that went into operation already 48 years ago.

STM will put CA$537 million (US$473 million) toward maintaining its real estate assets and modifying its infrastructure in order to integrate the new rolling stock. Of that amount, some CA$196 million (US$172 million) will serve to refurbish métro stations, as part of Phases I and II of the Réno-Infrastructures program and CA$54 million (US$47 million) for Berri-UQAM's major renovation.

The governments of Québec and Canada along with the Montréal Urban Agglomeration will finance 75 percent of the STM's investment spending. The MTQ's share is at 63 percent, while the federal government will cover 10 percent. The STM will almost entirely finance the difference, at 25 percent.


The Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board received updated information about the projected cost and timeframe for the Peninsula Corridor Electrification Project (PCEP), which includes Caltrain electrification and the purchase of new electric vehicles.

On November 10, Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) New York City Transit's (NYCT) FASTRACK program returns to the F line between Greenwich Village in Manhattan and Downtown Brooklyn.

BNSF celebrated the opening of a new $45-million logistic center in Sweetwater, Texas, November 6. The logistic center, capable of supporting rail, truck and transload services, will accommodate several industries, including agricultural commodities, sand, pipe and aggregate.

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