Jenifer Nunez, assistant editor

Jenifer Nunez, assistant editor

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Tuesday, 04 February 2014 14:55

Poll says Torontonians prefer LRT to subway

According to Leger, The Research Intelligence Group, who did an independent survey recently, the majority of polled Toronto residents want to build a seven-stop light-rail transit (LRT) line in Scarborough rather than a three-stop subway extension. The poll question did mention that a subway option would mean a CA$1-billion (US$903-million) tax increase over 30 years.

Tuesday, 04 February 2014 14:53

TriMet's WES celebrates fifth anniversary

In Portland, Ore., TriMet's WES Commuter Rail celebrated its fifth anniversary with more people climbing on board than ever before. Since the line opened on February 2, 2009, riders have taken more than 1.9 million trips on WES. Ridership has climbed each year reaching more than 476,000 in 2013.

The Connecticut Department of Transportation (ConnDOT) will undertake a $10-million project to upgrade the power supply for Metro-North Railroad's New Haven Line beginning on February 3. The project will prevent the type of catastrophic power failure that occurred this past fall in Mount Vernon, N.Y.,

The Chicago Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) Board of Directors recently authorized issuance of up to $100 million of 30-year general obligation RTA bonds to finance multiple state of good repair projects to bolster the condition of the region's transit infrastructure.

"State and federal dollars are not sufficient to support our capital needs, so the RTA is using its bonding authority to keep our region in a state of good repair," said RTA Board Chairman John Gates, Jr. "Our region needs approximately $33 billion to bring the existing system to a state of good repair. The RTA is meeting a portion of the need with this bond issuance. The recent favorable reports from the three ratings services only reinforce the importance of the RTA and its ability to benefit the region in this way."

The bonding will fund projects that benefit the region's public transit riders through enhancements to Chicago Transportation Authority, Metra and Pace bus capital assets, specifically tied to state of good repair, in the categories of rolling Stock, track and structure, electric signal and communications and stations and passenger facilities

Qualifying projects would include projects that upon completion would have a useful life of at least 20 years; projects that will reduce the region's state of good repair backlog and projects that replace assets, which fall into the category of "worn" or "marginal" as identified in the Capital Asset Condition Assessment.

 

Monday, 03 February 2014 14:44

TriMet, LIRR and unions spar

In Portland, Ore., TriMet has called upon on the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) to represent employees on the issues of wages and benefits before the 150-day statutory bargaining period ends on February 4.

The Metra Board of Directors unanimously selected Donald Orseno, a lifelong railroader who has worked at Metra for more than three decades, as the next executive director/CEO of the Chicago suburban rail agency.

The California Transportation Commission (CTC) has allocated $27 million in new funding to three projects that it says will improve passenger rail and further strengthen the state's economy.

The Metropolitan Council released two draft reports prepared by independent consultants to examine important issues that affect the proposed Southwest light-rail line serving the communities of Minneapolis, St. Louis Park, Hopkins, Minnetonka and Eden Prairie.

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) awarded a $24-million contract to repair and rehabilitate three bridges spanning the Merrimack River in Haverhill to JV: LM Heavy Civil Construction and Cooperativa Muratori & Cementisti – CMC di Ravenna. The bridge work will allow the MBTA to continue to operate safe and reliable passenger rail service on the Haverhill Line.

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