Labor Day weekend always feels like a good time to end work. Officials in Ottawa were hoping all problems with its new light-rail system on the Confederation Line would be resolved by September, but contractor Rideau Transit Group (RTG) is not providing a firm date yet.
Ottawa handed RTG a notice of default three months ago because according to the city the builder failed to meet contractual obligations on the $2 billion project.
There is reported progress in several areas, including fixing the software that runs the train doors. Ottawa also would like RTG to address problematic switch heaters. The suggestion is to upgrade the heaters to gas-powered instead of electric. The Trillium Line features gas-powered heaters.
RTG does believe 15 double-car trains will be in operation beginning the morning of Aug. 4. There will be a total of 38 cars ready for action in the coming weeks, which amounts to 19 two-car trains that are ready to run. The city has been running only 13 during rush hour since the Confederation Line opened last September.
RTG is still looking to receive a final payment on the Confederation Line. Ottawa released a $4.5 million check last year, but would like to see all of the issues fixed before paying the outstanding amount.