METROLINX and Infrastructure Ontario have awarded a multi-billion-dollar contract for on-corridor works for the GO Transit commuter rail expansion project to ONxpress Transportation Partners, a consortium of Alstom, Aecon Group, DB International Operations and FCC Construcción.

According to IRJ’s sister publication Railway Age, Aecon holds a 50% interest in a joint venture with FCC, which will undertake the construction work, and a 28% interest in a 25-year operations and maintenance partnership with DB International Operations. Hatch and WSP Canada are also consortium members.

The consortium will design, build, operate, and maintain the new infrastructure and trains for 25 years. Alstom will supply new electric locomotives, install ERTMS Level 1 train control, a new traction power system and electrify the network at 25kV ac. Alstom will also upgrade GO Transit existing fleet of double-deck coaches supplied by Bombardier Transportation, signalling, telecommunications, and other digital equipment.

The project will mark the first use of ERTMS in North America rather than the Positive Train Control (PTC) system being deployed in the United States or the Enhanced Train Control (ETC) system, which the Canadian government committed to develop earlier this year.

The project includes:

• operation of train services including train crews

• timetable planning and train control for all operators across the GO-owned network

• design, construction, integration of the railway corridor covering the civil works, tracks, signalling and telecommunications, as well as their maintenance

• maintenance, servicing, and cleaning of all rolling stock and new electric locomotives

• construction of new maintenance and train storage and layover facilities, and

• reconstruction of Toronto Union station tracks and platforms.

New stations will be added to the GO Transit network.

The GO Expansion project will transform the GO commuter rail network from a mainly peak-hour diesel service into an all-day electric service with trains running every 15 minutes on the core rail network comprising the Lakeshore East and West lines (Burlington - Toronto Union - Oshawa), the Kitchener Line from Toronto Union to Bramalea, the Barrie Line to Bradford and the Stouffville Line to Unionville. Later phases will include service expansions to Niagara, Kitchener-Waterloo and Bowmanville.

There will now be a two-year collaborative development phase between ONxpress Transportation Partners and Metrolinx to refine the scope, progress with the design and plan the operational improvements to the system. The scope of work and corresponding contract value will be finalised between ONxpress Transportation Partners and Metrolinx when the development phase has been completed.