IO, Metrolinx move forward with RFP for rail tunnel project

Written by Mischa Wanek-Libman, editor
image description
The existing rail tunnel beneath Highway 401 in the Toronto area.
Infrastructure Ontario

Three shortlisted teams have been invited to submit a Request for Proposals by Infrastructure Ontario (IO) and Metrolinx to design, build and finance the Highway 401 Rail Tunnel project.


The three teams were selected based on criteria from the Request for Qualifications that began in September 2016. IO says the selection criteria included design and construction experience and the financial capacity to deliver a project of this size and complexity.

What is required of the project is the construction of a second tunnel under the Greater Toronto Area’s Highway 401/409 to accommodate two tracks, future signaling and communications infrastructure. Additionally, the project requires replacement of retaining wall footings that support the ramp from eastbound Highway 409 to eastbound Highway 401.

The work is required to accommodate GO Transit expansion along the Kitchener Corridor under Metrolinx’s Regional Express Rail (RER) program. The Kitchener Corridor investment is part of a larger, system-wide plan to improve overal GO Transit service, including the delivery of GO Regional Express Rail (RER) by 2024-25. The GO RER program represents a historic investment in GO Transit that will provide faster, more frequent and convenient transit service across the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area, including introducing electrification of core segments of the GO rail network by 2024-25. GO RER will help manage congestion, connect people to jobs and decrease greenhouse gas emissions by reducing car trips and improving travel times.

“The Highway 401 Rail Tunnel project will make it possible to allow all-day, two-way, 15-minute service on core segments of the network. We are pleased to reach yet another milestone in expanding the GO rail network to bring faster, more frequent rail service to the people of the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area,” said Bruce McCuaig, president and CEO, Metrolinx.

The shortlisted teams are:

  • Kiewit
    • Proponent Lead: Peter Kiewit Infrastructure Co.
    • Constructor: Peter Kiewit Infrastructure Co., Kenaidan Contracting Ltd., Obayashi Canada Ltd.
    • Design: Hatch Corporation, Jacked Structures Ltd.
    • Financial Advisor: Kiewit Canada Development Corp., TD Securities
  • TK Linx
    • Proponent Lead: Aecon Infrastructure Management Inc., Dragados Canada Inc.
    • Constructor: Aecon Infrastructure Management Inc., Dragados Canada Inc., Technicore Underground Corp.
    • Design: Arup Canada Inc, Morrison Hershfield, Peto MacCallum Ltd.
    • Financial Advisor: ACS Infrastructure Canada Inc., Aecon Concessions
  • Toronto Tunnel Partners
    • Proponent Lead: EllisDon Capital Inc, STRABAG Inc.
    • Constructor: EllisDon Civil, STRABAG
    • Design: WSP Canada Inc., Dr. Sauer & Partners, Amec Foster Wheeler
    • Financial Advisor: EllisDon Capital Inc, STRABAG Inc.

Teams have been invited to respond to the RFP and will begin preparing proposals that detail how they will design, build and finance the project. Once submissions are received, IO and Metrolinx will evaluate the proposals, select a preferred proponent and then negotiate a final contract. A successful proponent is expected to be announced in fall 2017. A fairness monitor will oversee the entire procurement process.

Categories: Ballast, Ties, Rail, Bridge/Retaining Walls/Tunnels, Commuter/Regional, ON Track Maintenance, Rapid Transit/Light Rail