Bombardier LRT Vehicles Delayed

WATERLOO REGION - After months of saying troubles at Bombardier would not impact the region's light rail vehicles, officials now say at least two trains will be late.

"There's concern of course because there's a delay, but the delay is quite manageable at this point in time," said Coun. Tom Galloway, who chairs the committee overseeing light rail. "If the slippage or the delay were to be greater, then it could become an issue."

The first train for the Region of Waterloo's light rail transit project will be delayed by two months to October and the final, fourteenth vehicle will be delayed by four months to May 2017.

Thomas Schmidt, commissioner of transportation and environmental services, said several minor problems in the manufacturing process have added up to the delay.

"That's really what we're running into," he said. "There's a series of these minor issues that need to be addressed and they've gotten to a point where they now are resulting in that two-month delay."

Officials say the delays won't impact the overall schedule for the light rail transit project, with trains expected to start running 19 kilometres of track between Conestoga Mall in Waterloo and Fairview Park mall in Kitchener in late 2017.

Marc-Andre Lefebvre, head of communications with Bombardier Canada, said the company is working to ensure the vehicles are delivered quickly and in good repair.

"We are actively resolving some issues in our supply chain that have slightly hindered our delivery schedule, and we are working to mitigate the impact of these challenges," he said. "We are deploying all necessary resources to ensure that we build and deliver the high quality vehicles the Region of Waterloo is expecting."

The region is piggybacking on a Metrolinx contract for approximately 170 vehicles, including streetcars for the Toronto Transit Commission. The commission's order has been plagued by quality problems and resulted in some streetcars being rejected.

Regional politicians approved the $92.4-million deal for Bombardier trains in July 2013 and have been monitoring the issue.

Regional staff, consultants and representatives from Crown corporation Metrolinx have undertaken inspections at the Thunder Bay site in past to ensure quality of the vehicles.

Parts for the region's trains are manufactured in Mexico and production of the trains takes place in Thunder Bay.

Another trip is planned in May.

Despite the train delay and several delays at various sections along the route, officials expect to meet the target date for service to launch in late 2017.

Schmidt said that's the region's main concern and are changes made in construction and other plans to adapt.

"That's our target date and there are adjustments that are made," he said. "It's not that any of these delays happen in a vacuum."

The region and GrandLinq are investigating new construction methods and ways to ramp up construction to meet the region's projected launch, according to a staff report.

GrandLinq is bound by a project agreement with the region to meet certain timelines and standards, with penalties for failure. It sets out milestone completion dates for sections of the route.

According to the project agreement, the penalty for not meeting those targets is almost $23,000 per day.

With more than a year left to completion, about $434 million of the anticipated $818 million in capital costs for the project had been spent at the end of February, with another $326 million committed.

Galloway was cautiously optimistic the project will be on budget.

"Right now it's tracking well, but I don't think anybody wants to be so bold as to say there won't be another road or another issue that comes up ... Who knows what could happen," he said.

, Twitter: @DesmondRecord

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Delivery of Light Rail Trains
Delivery of light rail trainsThe delivery of light rail trains were being done at the small worksite of Choa Chu Kang Road using the crane. It was lifted up to the tracks, coupled with the Bombardier Innovia APM 100 C801 and pushed to the depot— — — — — —Nairobi Light RailThe Nairobi Light Rail system was announced in 2016.— — — — — —Jerusalem Light Rail constructionIn planning the route of the Jerusalem Light Rail, which began construction in 2002, the city planning authority debated how to preserve the historic buildings that line Jaffa Road while at the same time accommodate passengers and train operations. While buildings such as Batei Saidoff, located further east on Jaffa Road, were able to be preserved, the buildings of Sha'arei Yerushalayim and Ohel Shlomo that fronted Jaffa Road were determined to be beyond rehabilitation or preservation and were razed. Architects created a physical reminder of the historic homes by erecting in their place a concrete memorial inlaid with the original door and window frames of the destroyed buildings. To emphasize the shape of the frames, the surrounding wall was plastered in shades of turquoise, terracotta, and ochre.— — — — — —Light rail in CanberraThe Canberra light rail network, also known as Canberra Metro, is a light rail system serving the city of Canberra, Australia. The initial 12-kilometre (7.5 mi) line links the northern town centre of Gungahlin to the city centre (Civic) and has 13 stops. Services commenced on 20 April 2019. An extension of the line south to the Woden Town Centre is currently being planned.— — — — — —Newcastle Light RailThe Newcastle Light Rail is a light rail system in Newcastle, New South Wales, running from Newcastle Interchange through the central business district to Pacific Park. Major construction commenced in September 2017 and the line was opened on 17 February 2019. It is operated by Newcastle Transport— — — — — —Tel Aviv Light RailThe Tel Aviv Metropolitan Area Mass-Transit System is a planned mass transit system for the Tel Aviv Metropolitan Area. The system will include different types of rapid transit like light rail (which will run underground in some areas), bus and more. Work on the Red Line, the first in the project, started on September 21, 2011, following years of preparatory works and numerous delays. The Red line is planned to open in 2021. Construction of the Purple line started in December 2018. Work on the Green line was set to begin in January 2019.— — — — — —MetrosTrams and light railTrams in France go back to 1837 when a 15 km steam tram line connected Montrond-les-Bains and Montbrison in the Loire. With the development of electric trams at the end of the 19th century, networks proliferated in French cities over a period of 15 years. Although nearly all of the country's tram systems were replaced by bus services in the 1930s or shortly after World War II, France is now in the forefront of the revival of tramways and light rail systems around the globe. Only trams lines in Lille and Saint-tienne have operated continuously since the 19th century. Since the opening of the Nantes tramway in 1985, more than twenty towns and cities across France have built new tram lines. As of 2013, there are 25 operational tram networks in France, with 3 under construction and 4 more planned. France is also home to Alstom, a leading tram manufacturer. List of trams and light rail systems— — — — — —List of light rail systems operating in the United StatesAs of March 2020[update], there are a total of 53 operational light rail-type lines and systems (noting that some cities, such as Philadelphia, Portland, San Francisco and Seattle, have more than one light rail system) that offer regular year-round transit service in the United States: 26 modern light rail systems, 14 modern streetcar systems, and 13 heritage streetcar systems (including the San Francisco cable car system). These include the seven 'legacy' systems described above; the remainder are second-generation "modern" light rail (or streetcar) systems, or are "heritage" streetcar systems, opened since 1980. The United States, with its 27 systems (as counted by the Light Rail Transit Association), has a much larger number of "true" light rail systems (i.e. not including streetcar and heritage streetcar systems), by far, compared to any other country in the world (the next largest are Germany with 10 light rail systems, and Japan with 9). All of the operational regular transit light rail and streetcar systems in the United States are listed in the following table: Notes
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