Despite lack of support from independent certifier, Ottawa still sues light-rail builder

Written by RT&S Staff
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Ottawa light rail.
City of Ottawa

The city of Ottawa, Canada, has slapped Rideau Transit Group (RTG) with a lawsuit dealing with the construction of the Confederation Line. It’s the second project lawsuit the city has filed in two weeks.

The latest legal fight ($131 million) deals with the claim that RTG failed to meet what was outlined in the construction contract. According to the lawsuit, the builder missed two key completion dates and the line was put into service over 15 months late. The city says the $131 million covers carrying costs, delayed opening expenses, consultant expenditures, wages and salaries of employees, financial costs, and accounting expenses.

A final payment of $59 million was withheld from RTG, which also was docked $1 million for each of the four times a contract deadline was missed.

An independent certifier, however, is not in full agreement with the city. The two sides and the independent certifier met for a resolution process, and the certifier did not agree that the 15-month delay cost Ottawa $131 million.

Last week Ottawa hit its own insurance companies with a $361 million claim dealing with the Rideau Street sinkhole in June 2016. The sinkhole is one of the big reasons the light-rail line was delayed by more than a year. The city submitted proof of loss statements in August and was expecting to get compensated for financial costs, legal and accounting expenses, anticipated lost gross revenue, and additional staffing costs. The insurers denied the claim.

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